How to File Your Tax Returns Through Credit Karma Tax—For Free

You can use Credit Karma for taxes, too. The company offers Credit Karma Tax, which is a free service for preparing and filing federal and state tax returns.

Dan Clarendon - Author

Feb. 5 2021, Published 3:56 p.m. ET

1040 form
Source: Getty Images

If you know Credit Karma only as a way to track credit scores, you might be surprised to learn that people use Credit Karma for taxes, too. The personal finance technology company unveiled Credit Karma Tax in 2017, which offers a free way for Americans to prepare and file federal and state tax returns.

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“Every year millions of Americans dread having to do their taxes. We waste nearly 10 percent of the average federal tax refund and countless hours of our time filing our taxes, and it shouldn’t be this difficult,” Credit Karma Tax General Manager Jagjit Chawla said in a press release when Credit Karma Tax was announced. “We’re excited to offer a product that can give people back their time and money. It’s the right thing to do.”

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Can I file my taxes with Credit Karma?

Credit Karma offers “smart, simple, and 100% free filing” through its Credit Karma Tax product and boasts features like a Smart File streamlined filing process, Max Refund Guarantee, Accurate Calculations Guarantee, and Free Audit Defense.

The company specifies that Credit Karma Tax supports the most common tax forms. Support articles detail the tax forms and situations Credit Karma supports and the tax forms and situations Credit Karma does not support.

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Is Credit Karma free for filing taxes?

E-filing state and federal taxes through Credit Karma Tax is “always free, start to finish,” as Credit Karma explains in a support article. Other online services require users to pay if their tax returns are complex or require users to pay a fee to submit state returns.

How to file taxes with Credit Karma

To start filing taxes through Credit Karma Tax, simply go to the website and create a Credit Karma account or log into your existing account. To streamline the process, Credit Karma Tax allows you to import last year’s tax return from H&R Block, TurboTax, or TaxAct.

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Getting a tax return from Credit Karma

If you use Credit Karma Tax to e-file your federal and state tax returns, you can download the returns after you file them or even while you’re still working on them. Just head to the My Tax Forms section of your account.

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How long Credit Karma takes for a tax refund

Credit Karma explains that if you e-filed your tax return, your refund should arrive about 21 days after your filing. You can start checking the IRS Where’s My Refund tool 24 hours after the IRS accepts your return to find out when your refund is approved and when the money is coming your way. 

If you mailed a paper copy of your return, it might take six weeks or more for your tax refund to arrive. You should wait at least four weeks before checking the Where’s My Refund tool.

Various factors can delay your refund, including missing or erroneous information on your return. Also, federal law prohibits the IRS from issuing the earned income tax credit or additional child tax credit before mid-February. This might delay your return if you claimed the credits and filed your tax return early in the tax season.


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