IRS Direct File Program Costs

April 2024

The IRS tested out their Direct File program this year - a free system which allows taxpayers to file their taxes directly with the IRS instead of having to use a 3rd party (eg Turbo Tax) to file on their behalf.

This year the program served roughly 100,000 people (which was their goal) and was available in 12 states.

The cost per taxpayer worked out to roughly $1,140 for each return filed.

Turbo Tax (among other commercial tax preparation solutions) was not super happy about the program - stating that it’s wasting taxpayer dollars creating a solution to a problem that has already been solved (of course Intuit would hate free competition to their product).

Additionally, members of the GOP have called the program unconstitutional since it was not approved directly by Congress, but instead was created from the funds given to the IRS from the 2022 Inflation Reduction Act.

It’s unclear at this point whether the Direct File Program will continue for the 2025 tax season.

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