2019-02-08 / News Update

Servicemembers reap benefits of tax law changes

C. Todd Lopez
Defense News


Recent changes in tax law mean that many in uniform could see big returns when they file their 2018 taxes. Pat Molnar Recent changes in tax law mean that many in uniform could see big returns when they file their 2018 taxes. Pat Molnar WASHINGTON — Recent changes in tax law mean that many in uniform could see big returns when they file their 2018 taxes.

“This last tax year has been quite exciting with all of the changes that occurred to it,” said Army Lt. Col. David Dulaney, executive director of the Armed Forces Tax Council. “The good news is that most of our Servicemembers should see a substantial reduction in their overall federal taxes for 2018.”

One way Servicemembers can maximize their tax refund is to log onto Military OneSource and take advantage of MilTax, a free suite of services designed specifically for Servicemembers. MilTax includes personalized support from tax consultants and easy-to-use tax preparation and e-filing software.

• MilTax is available to activeduty, Reserve and National Guard Servicemembers. Additionally, thanks to new language in the National Defense Authorization Act, “service” has been expanded to included transitioning Servicemembers -- those who have separated or retired will be able to make use of MilTax for up to a year after leaving the military.

• MilTax is available through www.militaryonesource.mil and includes online tax preparation software designed specifically for military personnel and the unique circumstances that surround military life.

• Through Military OneSource and MilTax, Servicemembers have access to expert tax consultants specially trained to address tax issues related to military service. During tax season, consultants are available seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. in the Eastern time zone at 800-342-9647.

• Using MilTax, eligible individuals can file one federal and up to three state tax returns through the Military OneSource website. The service is available now through Oct. 15, for extended filers.

• At some installations, the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program, or VITA, allows Servicemembers to sit down face to face with a tax professional to help prepare their tax forms.

• All Servicemembers are required to pay taxes. Military service doesn’t mean Servicemembers don’t have to pay. MilTax is free to those eligible to use it.

“One of the worst things we can hear is a military Servicemember went out and paid for tax services that we provide for free through the DOD,” said Erika R. Slaton, program deputy for Military OneSource. “We want to ensure our Servicemembers and families know they are supported, and we provide the best possible support for them in completing their tax services.”

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