Pennsylvanians encouraged to use myPATH to file PA tax returns

Regional News

This Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2019 file photo shows part of a 1040 federal tax form printed from the Internal Revenue Service website, in Zelienople, Pa. Tax filing season will start a bit later and look a bit different this year. That’s because the pandemic that defined 2020 has seeped into tax time as well. If you worked from home, received a relief payment, took on some gig work or filed unemployment benefits _ or someone filed a fake claim in your name _ there are things you need to be aware of. Likewise if you normally receive certain tax credits. The IRS will begin accepting tax returns on Feb. 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic, File)

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WTAJ) — With the tax filing season opening Friday, the Department of Revenue is encouraging taxpayers to electronically file their Pennsylvania personal income tax returns with the department’s new, state-only filing system available at mypath.pa.gov.

myPATH is a free, user-friendly option that allows most taxpayers to seamlessly file the Pennsylvania Income Tax Return (PA-40) and make income tax payments, as well as offering other services. The deadline to submit 2020 personal income tax returns is April 15, 2021.

“Pennsylvania taxpayers who file their state tax returns electronically with myPATH benefit from faster processing and will receive their refunds sooner if they are expecting one,” Revenue Secretary Dan Hassell said. “We encourage all of our customers to take advantage of this free, easy-to-use online option.”

myPATH Offers Many Benefits

Using the electronic filing option available through mypath.pa.gov offers many benefits, including:

  • Fast and free return/refund processing
  • The “Where’s My Income Tax Refund?” system to track the status of a refund
  • Instant confirmation of a successful filing
  • The benefit of error-reducing automatic calculators
  • User-friendly options that are not available to taxpayers filing by paper
  • The ability to view a detailed Statement of Account for personal income tax

Other Important Features in myPATH

Taxpayers do not need to create a username or password to perform many functions in myPATH. That includes filing a PA-40 or making a payment, responding to department requests for information, and checking the status of a refund.

In order to file the PA-40, taxpayers will need to provide their Social Security number and either: (1) the tax liability for a previous tax year; or (2) their birth date, Pennsylvania driver’s license/photo ID number and the expiration date for the license/photo ID.

If you choose to create a username and password in myPATH, you’ll have the ability to update/view detailed account information and notices. You can also manage third-party access to your account, meaning you can give a tax professional or another person access to file your return and make payments on your behalf.

A detailed list of instructions is available in the myPATH User Guide. myPATH replaced the department’s previous personal income tax e-Services applications, including PA Direct File.

Electronic Filing for Free

Other free electronic filing options are available to file state and federal returns using software from a reputable vendor. More vendor information is available on the Department of Revenue’s website. 

Electronic Filing for a Fee

Paid tax preparers and commercial tax preparation software providers offer electronic filing, or e-filing, for a fee. Check a list of vendors on the department’s website for further information.    

April 15 Deadline

All taxpayers who received more than $33 in total gross taxable income in calendar year 2020 must file a Pennsylvania personal income tax return by midnight, Thursday, April 15, 2021.

PA Personal Income Tax Guide

Pennsylvania taxpayers who have personal income tax questions are encouraged to review the PA Personal Income Tax Guide, an online publication prepared by the Department of Revenue that includes detailed information on a number of PIT-related topics.

Taxpayer Service and Assistance

Personal income tax assistance is also available through the department’s Online Customer Service Center and by calling 717-787-8201 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. The Online Customer Service Center contains answers to hundreds of common income tax questions and allows taxpayers to securely submit a question to the department through a process that is similar to sending an email.

The Department of Revenue’s district offices are open in a limited capacity with social distancing guidelines in place. Appointments are required to receive in-person assistance. Please keep the following in mind.

  • Taxpayer assistance hours are 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Appointments between 8:30 a.m. and 10 a.m. will be reserved for senior citizens.
  • Taxpayers are required to wear a mask during appointments.
  • Taxpayers should know that the Department of Revenue will be following health and safety guidelines established by the Department of Health to promote a clean office environment.

Taxpayers can check the status of their refunds online by selecting the Where’s My Income Tax Refund? link on the department’s homepage; or by calling 1-888-PATAXES. Taxpayers will be prompted to provide their Social Security number and requested refund amount to obtain the current status.

Free tax forms and instructions are available at www.revenue.pa.gov.

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