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Council on Aging Department

Posted on: June 18, 2020

AARP TAXAIDE at the Shrewsbury Senior Center Closed for the Season

The AARP TAXAIDE service offered at the Shrewsbury Senior Center will remain closed for the 2019 income tax season.   As of June 15th the Shrewsbury town government has not set a date to reopen the Senior Center.  It appears unlikely the center will open in time to complete tax returns by the July 15th deadline.  At the same time, AARP has not given general permission for sites to reopen.  Finally, only a limited number of volunteers are willing to work during the COVID-19 emergency. So, the decision was made jointly by the Senior Center and the AARP TAXAIDE Site Coordinator to close the service.

We all understand that many people have come to rely on the AARP TAXAIDE service.  During this time of COVID-19, the IRS is providing several free on-line tax services.  The eligibility varies by program, but in general your AGI (Adjusted Gross Income) needs to be under $69,000 to qualify.    As a rule of thumb, for lower income people your AGI is all income except Social Security.  Part of your Social Security is included in AGI for higher income people.   The $69,000 AGI limit should accommodate  most of the people seen by the program.  Note that these programs are offered by the IRS and local TAXAIDE volunteers are not familiar with how to use them. 

To use one of the available services, go to

  • IRS.gov
  • Select “Do your taxes for free”
  • Select the “Free File On Line Product” button
  • Select the “Lookup Tool” button
  • If eligible, one or several options will appear.  Select an option and follow the instructions.

If you would like to do your taxes yourself, you need to order forms at IRS.gov/forms.  Forms are almost impossible to find locally.  The IRS site provides access to all forms and instructions to download and print.  The IRS phone line to order forms by phone (800-829-3676) has been shut down because of COVID-19.

If you are not comfortable doing your taxes yourself or using the online tool, you will need to find a paid preparer.  Neither the Senior Center staff nor the local TAXAIDE volunteers are permitted to recommend a paid preparer.   We suggest you ask a relative or friend for a suggestion, or do a general search online for tax preparers near me,  or use the National Association of Enrolled Agents website at NAEA.org.

Finally, if you expect a refund, you could wait until next year to file your 2019 return.  There is no penalty if you do not owe taxes.  If permitted to do so, the TAXAIDE group will start in late January to handle any leftover 2019 returns.  However, if you owe taxes, you must file and pay before July 15, 2020 or there will be a penalty accessed when you do file.

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