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FTB’s Free e-file Program, CalFile, Now Available in Spanish

Released March 24, 2008

Benefits Include Refunds within Seven Days, Fewer Errors

The Franchise Tax Board (FTB) today announced that CalFile, the electronic state tax-filing program is now offered in both English and Spanish. CalFile is available at no cost to 6.5 million Californians.

“Making the State’s free and convenient CalFile program available in Spanish will make tax filing easier for even more Californians,” said State Controller and FTB Chair John Chiang.

The benefits of CalFile include faster refunds within seven days of filing, fewer errors, and immediate confirmation. CalFile takes income of up to nearly $311,000, itemized deductions, and some tax credits. It is available to taxpayers who file the Forms 540 2EZ, 540A, and to a limited degree the 540. Taxpayers owed a refund can request FTB to deposit their funds in up to two different bank accounts.

To use CalFile, visit FTB’s website at ftb.ca.gov.

In addition to CalFile, FTB provides a Check Your Refund online service in Spanish. FTB also has an interactive voice response system in Spanish and staffs its call center with bilingual agents. Many Volunteer Income Tax Assistance and Tax Counseling for the Elderly sites provide bilingual support statewide to taxpayers needing help to complete simple tax returns.

Another free e-file service taxpayers may want to consider is ReadyReturn. The ReadyReturn program completes tax returns for individuals who in 2006 filed their tax return as single, had no dependents, took the standard deduction, and in 2007 had only one employer. ReadyReturn uses wage and withholding data already provided by employers to complete tax returns. Taxpayers may accept the return as presented, make changes, or choose not to use it and file using other means.

FTB encourages taxpayers who owe money to use Web Pay rather than mail a check. Web Pay allows taxpayers to make payments from their bank account to satisfy their return balance due or extension payment. Taxpayers can also pay estimated tax or make any bill payments online. Taxpayers can also pay with their Discover/NOVUS, MasterCard, American Express, or Visa cards for a small fee. FTB also accepts payments sent through Western Union.

Taxpayers should also visit FTB’s website for more online services such as My FTB Account. This application allows taxpayers to view their payments and account balance, FTB-issued 1099s, and California wage and withholding information. FTB’s website also has other e-file options and more tax information.