Read the Maine Complete Count Committee report for the upcoming 2020 national census Bookmark and Share

January 2, 2020

Read the Maine Complete Count Committee report for the upcoming 2020 national census at the following web page:

https://www.maine.gov/dafs/reports

Information about the US National Census Count for 2020 Bookmark and Share

January 9, 2020

Job seekers!

The U.S. Census Bureau is looking for people to assist with the 2020 census beginning this coming April. For more information about working for the U.S. Census Bureau, please click on the following link:

https://2020census.gov/en/jobs.html

To find out why the census is so important to Maine, please visit the U.S. Census Information page by clicking on the following link:

https://2020census.gov/en.html

Tips for Unemployment Claimants Bookmark and Share

January 16, 2020

Tips for Unemployment Claimants

How to avoid being locked out:

One of the most common issues reported is being locked out of a benefit account due to failed password attempts. Currently you have two attempts available to enter your password correctly. If you fail to provide the correct password a third consecutive time, your account will be locked and can only be unlocked by an unemployment representative. We recommend that if you have entered your password incorrectly twice that you use the forgot password or forgot username links provided.

As long as you have activated the email address associated with the account when the account was created, you can click on the "Forgot Password" link underneath the login boxes to have a new temporary password generated and sent to the email address on file. Refer to the section below for instructions on how to activate your email if you have not done so already. You will be able to use this temporary password to log in and will be prompted to set up a new password, personal to you, at that time. For more information, please visit the ReEmployME Login Information page at https://www.maine.gov/unemployment/remelogin/

How to activate your email address in order to reset your own password:

To reset your own password, you will need to activate the email address associated with your ReEmployME account. Activating your email will also allow you to receive notifications via email when new information is added to your account, such as forms and decisions. If you have not yet activated your email address, or are not sure if you have, please do the following:

  1. Log in to your ReEmployME account.
  2. Navigate to Benefits Maintenance > Update Claimant Profile > Verify E-mail.
  3. On the next screen either enter your Verification Code received at the email address on file to activate your email or click on the word 'here' to have a new code generated and sent to the email address on file. (If you need another verification code, click here. An email will be sent to you with a new verification code.)

  4. If a new verification code is sent to you, go back to step 2 on the same screen and enter the code to complete the activation process.

You are now ready to reset your own password should you forget it. Remember to only try entering your password twice, or you will be locked out and require staff assistance to unlock your account!

Remember to file your weekly certifications every week

After you file your initial claim for benefits, in order to receive benefits, if eligible, you need to file weekly certifications. Do not wait to start filing even if there is a hold on your account pending a fact-finding or other issue. Our claim week runs from Sunday through Saturday. You can file for a week as of the Sunday following the prior week. You will need your work searches and the amount of wages earned (even if not yet paid) for the week claimed to file for the week.

  1. Log in to your ReEmployME account.
  2. Navigate to Weekly Certification > File Weekly Certification.

Please note: In order to file and complete your claim, after submitting and confirming your work search information, make sure to click the "Next" button in the bottom right hand corner of the screen. Doing so will load the weekly claim questions, which have to be completed in order to file your weekly certification.

IRS Free File opens today; do taxes online for free Bookmark and Share

January 17, 2020

IR-2020-06

WASHINGTON - Most taxpayers can get an early start on their federal tax returns as IRS Free File featuring brand-name online tax providers opens today at IRS.gov/FreeFile for the 2020 tax filing season.

Taxpayers whose adjusted gross income was $69,000 or less in 2019 covering most people can do their taxes now, and the Free File provider will submit the return once the IRS officially opens the 2020 tax filing season on Jan. 27 and starts processing tax returns.

"Free File online products offer free federal tax return preparation, free electronic filing and free direct deposit of refunds to help get your money faster," said Chuck Rettig, IRS Commissioner. The IRS has worked to improve the program for this year, and we encourage taxpayers to visit IRS.gov, and consider using the Free File option to get a head start on tax season.

For 2020, the Free File partners are: 1040Now, Inc., ezTaxReturn.com (English and Spanish), FileYourTaxes.com, Free tax Returns.com, H&R Block, Intuit, On-Line Taxes, Inc., Tax ACT, TaxHawk, Inc. and TaxSlayer (English and Spanish).

Since its 2003 debut, Free File has served nearly 57 million taxpayers, saving an estimated $1.7 billion calculated using a conservative $30 tax preparation fee. Free File is a public-private partnership between the Internal Revenue Service and Free File Inc. (FFI), a consortium of tax software providers who make their Free File products available at IRS.gov/FreeFile.

Here's how Free File works:

  1. Go to https://www.irs.gov/freefile to see all Free File options.
  2. Browse each of the offers or use a look up tool to help you find the right product. Each Free File partner sets its own eligibility standards generally based on income, age and state residency. But if the taxpayers adjusted gross income was $69,000 or less, they will find at least one free product to use.
  3. Select a provider and follow the links to their web page to begin a tax return.
  4. Complete and e-File a tax return only if you have all the income and deduction records you need. The fastest way to get a refund is by filing electronically and selecting direct deposit. If you owe, use direct pay or electronic options.

Most companies provide a special offer for active duty military personnel who earned $69,000 or less. Those taxpayers can choose from any participating Free File provider regardless of the companys other eligibility standards. Free File also can be a valuable tool for younger taxpayers or first-time filers with modest incomes as well as retirees and working families seeking to save money.

Free File providers also offer state tax return preparation, some for free and some for a fee. Again, use the look up tool to find the right product. There are two products in Spanish. With Free File, you can even use any digital device, personal computer, tablet or smart phone. Free File products are mobile enabled so you can do your taxes on your smart phone or tablet and e-File with your hand-held device.

You should also know your protections under the IRS Free File program. They include:

  • Get a free federal tax return - As long as you qualify for the Free File federal return offer, you must not be charged for preparation and e-filing of a federal tax return.

  • Be protected from unnecessary fees - Other than state tax preparation fees and a possible fee if you choose to continue with tax preparation when you dont qualify for the federal return offer, you must not be offered or solicited marketing, promotional rebates, or any other form of selling activity on the Free File companys website. Any state preparation or non-qualifying fees must be disclosed on the companys Free File landing page.

  • Be guided in your choices - If you find you dont qualify for a specific companys Free File offer after visiting their Free File website, you may return to the IRS.gov Free File website to seek another Free File online offer. Each Free File company will provide you information when you dont qualify, with the option to select a link to bring you back to IRS.gov Free File site to select another company.

  • Get help if you need it - If you need help when you are on the companys Free File website and doing your taxes, you may refer to the companys free customer service options.

  • Be reminded of Free File - If you used Free File last year, you should receive an email from the same company product that you used, welcoming you back to Free File. The email should include a link to the companys Free File online program and explain how to file with the program.

  • Be protected from bank product fees - As part of Free File, you must not be offered any bank products such as Refund Anticipation Loans or Refund Anticipation Checks.

  • Get help finding a free option for you - IRS offers a Free File online Look-up tool to help you find an offer that best meets your needs.

  • Get important information on possible charges for state returns - Many Free File online products offer free state tax preparation. Some charge a state fee. Be sure to read each companys information carefully.

The IRS also offers Free File Fillable Forms, which is the electronic version of IRS paper forms to any taxpayer regardless of income. That product will be available when IRS opens the tax filing season on Jan. 27. Free File Fillable Forms is best for taxpayers who are comfortable doing their own taxes with little assistance. Free File online products will be available from January through October for extension filers. Taxpayers who cannot meet the April 15 deadline, also can use Free File to file extensions regardless of their income.

Free File is just one way the IRS provides free tax preparation options to taxpayers. Taxpayers wanting more personal help can visit one of thousands of community volunteer sites through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program or Tax Counseling for the Elderly at https://www.irs.gov/individuals/find-a-location-for-free-tax-prep offered by AARP. Trained volunteers will prepare returns for free for taxpayers who generally made $56,000 or less.

Taxpayers using their mobile phones or tablets to do their taxes can either go directly to http://www.irs.gov/freefile or they can use the IRS2Go app at https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/irs2goapp and select Free Tax Help to find information on Free File and the VITA locator tool.