Attorney General James, Mayor Adams, Speaker Adams Offer Tips For This Tax Season

NEW YORK – New York Attorney General Letitia James, New York City Mayor Eric Adams, and New York City Council Speaker Adrienne E. Adams today continued their efforts to protect and inform New Yorkers by offering tips and information on various resources available this tax season. With this year’s Tax Day only a month away, the officials are raising awareness about tax credits that may be at New Yorkers’ disposal, to ensure taxpayers receive the benefits they have earned. Additionally, Attorney General James urged New Yorkers to stay vigilant and report any suspected tax scams to her office. 

“Tax season may feel overwhelming to many New Yorkers, but thankfully there are resources available to lighten the load,” said Attorney General James. “I encourage all New Yorkers to take advantage of the organizations dedicated to helping out during the tax preparation process, and to utilize all of the tax breaks for which you qualify. Additionally, please stay vigilant against bad actors trying to take advantage, and you can always report concerns and complaints to my office. I am proud to partner with Mayor Adams and Speaker Adams to help raise awareness and ensure New Yorkers have all the information they need for a less stressful tax season.”

“This tax season, working class New Yorkers can expect to see more cash back than ever before, but only if they claim what’s theirs,” said New York City Mayor Eric Adams. “Last year, we went to Albany and secured an expansion of the city’s EITC for the first time in almost 20 years, and matched that with city action. We also continue to offer our NYC Free Tax Prep program to individuals who made less than $56,000 or families who made less than $80,000 last year, and were proud to announce an expansion of the program to freelance workers and small businesses for the first time. With the deadline to file rapidly approaching, we encourage all New Yorkers to file their taxes as soon as possible and for those eligible to take advantage of these valuable programs.”

“It is important that New Yorkers know about the resources available to assist with filing their taxes and receiving full refunds, including various tax credits that put money back into the pockets of working families,” said New York City Council Speaker Adrienne Adams. “I am proud to partner with Attorney General Letitia James to help inform and empower New Yorkers to get the tax refunds and benefits they deserve, while avoiding the deception of fraudulent efforts that target tax preparers. We urge New Yorkers to take advantage of city, state, and federal government-sponsored free tax return services, and I am proud to offer these services in my own district.”

As part of their ongoing efforts to help New Yorkers file their taxes safely and help reduce the stress the tax filing process can cause, Attorney General James, Mayor Adams, and Speaker Adams want to ensure New Yorkers are aware of the Internal Revenue Service’s (IRS) Free Filing program. Additionally, New York state has the Taxpayer Assistance Program (TAP) under which eligible New Yorkers can receive free virtual tax assistance from the state’s Department of Taxation and Finance. New Yorkers should know that there are Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites where they can get their tax returns prepared free of charge. In New York City, the NYC Free Tax Prep provides free, professional tax preparation to help eligible individuals and families keep their full refund. The NYC Free Tax Prep for self-employed New Yorkers also now provides income tax services to freelance workers and small business as well. Anyone using a tax preparer is encouraged to check their qualifications and history through the Better Business Bureau and consult New York’s Consumer Bill of Rights Regarding Tax Preparers

Attorney General James, Mayor Adams, and Speaker Adams also remind New Yorkers filing their taxes to apply for tax credits, which can reduce the amount of income tax you owe. Major programs available for eligible New Yorkers include the Empire State child credit, the property tax relief credit, the earned income credit, the solar energy system equipment credit, and many more. For more information about available tax credits, please visit New York state’s Department of Taxation and Finance income tax credit page.

In addition, some tax credits, such as the New York City Child Care Tax Credit (NYC CCTC) and Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), are refundable and can increase your tax refund amount if you owe less than the credit balance. The NYC CCTC is a tax benefit that help families in New York City who earn less than $30,000 pay for childcare for children ages four and younger. This tax credit is worth up to $1,733. The newly-expanded NYC EITC now provides greater benefits for qualifying individuals and families in New York City who are working or self-employed. New York City families with incomes below $5,000 are eligible for the maximum expanded NYC EITC. For more information, please visit New York City’s Department of Consumer and Workers Protection page

Additionally, Attorney General James, Mayor Adams, and Speaker Adams urge New Yorkers to remain vigilant against deceptive tax preparer schemes. One scheme to be aware of is tax preparers who deceptively claim to get your tax refund quicker, but will charge high interest rates and fees in the form of Tax Refund Advance Loans. Additional schemes include tax preparers who manipulate your financials to illegally inflate your tax return, and fraudsters who make false promises of free tax preparation services, only to deceive people into paying for those services. 

Any New Yorker who suspects that they are a victim of a scam are encouraged to report it to the Office of the Attorney General by submitting a complaint online or calling 800-771-7755. Tax scams should also be reported to the U.S. Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 800-366-4484.  

Today’s action is the latest in Attorney General James’ efforts to protect consumers from fraudulent tax schemes and practices. Last week, Attorney General James provided tips to protect consumers from fraudulent tax schemes. In May 2022, Attorney General James secured $141 million for millions of Americans who were deceived by TurboTax into paying for tax services that should have been free. In March 2022, Attorney General James issued a notice to ensure New York cryptocurrency investors were informed about their tax obligations. In March 2021, Attorney General James shut down a deceptive telefunding charity and ensured that future efforts to raise money would clearly inform New Yorkers that such donations are not tax deductible.