How to File ONLY a State Tax Return on efile.com

ATTENTION: Due to a recent policy change by tax authorities (not efile.com, Turbo Tax, and other online tax websites), you can only efile a state tax return together with your federal tax return. Though you can still prepare your state return on efile.com, you will need to print, sign, and mail it to the state tax agency. We apologize for this inconvenience due to policy change-we do not like it either! We are working on bringing state-only efiling back.

Here are the instructions on how to prepare, print, and mail only your state tax return (the instructions contain images that are not interactive): 

How to Prepare, Print, and Mail Only Your State Tax Return

efile Step 1

If you do not have an efile.com account, create a free account.

efile Step 2

Sign in and begin preparing your state return. You will start by entering general information.

Basically, you will need to go through the motions of preparing a federal return, but you will NOT have to efile it, and you will NOT have to pay for it. This seems confusing, but you will need to prepare a federal return on efile.com even if you have already filed or efiled a federal return elsewhere. This is because the state return is largely based on the federal return.

efile Step 3

Once you have completed your state return, click "File" on the gray left menu and click the green "Continue" button until you reach the "E-filing Your Return" screen" On that screen, do not click the "No thanks, I don't want to e-file my federal return" link. This seems contradictory (because you are not filing your federal return), but you will need to keep the "Yes, I want to e-file my federal return" selection in order to move on to the next step (as shown below). 

E-filing your return screen in efile.com software.

efile Step 4

On the "Lowest Price Guarantee" screen, you will still see a fee for preparing your federal return (if you prepared a 1040-EZ, the federal return will be free and you will not see a fee for the federal return). To be discounted for the price of your federal return, please contact efile.com support and one of our Taxperts will give you a special discount code. 

To enter the code, click on the blue "Have a promo code?" link, enter it in the box that appears, and click "Redeem." You can only enter one promo code, so please do not enter any other discount codes.

Once you enter the promo code, select the "Credit/Debit Card" option to pay with your credit or debit card and continue to credit/debit card payment screen.

Please note that this code does not make your state return free. Only your federal return will be free. Preparation of state returns is $19.95 (one fee that includes as many state returns as you need).

efile Step 5

Click "My Account" on the top of your efile.com account screen and you will see a link to a PDF copy of the tax return you prepared on our site. Click that link to download and print your state return. Make sure that you sign the return before you mail it.

If there is no link to your PDF return (or if the PDF has a "Not Valid for Filing" watermark), you will need to pay for the preparation of your state return in order to generate the PDF and/or remove the watermark (see Steps 3 and 4). However, if you still do not see the PDF link and/or see the watermark after paying for the preparation of your return, click "File" on the left menu and click the green "Continue" button until you get to the screen that has the “Yes, I'd like to create a preview of my return” link. Once you click that link, the PDF will be generated and/or updated without the "Not Valid for Filing" watermark. You'll see a link to the return on the “My Account” screen.

efile Step 6

If you need more help preparing, printing, and mailing only your state return, please contact efile.com support.

Why Do I Have to Prepare a Federal Return?

You can file only a state return on efile.com, but in order to prepare state returns, you must also prepare a federal return. This is because almost all of the information for a state return is taken from your federal return. The federal information is needed to prepare any state return.

However, you will NOT have to efile your federal return, and you will NOT have to pay for it

We know it may be a hassle to enter federal return information all over again if you have already done so somewhere else, and for that we deeply regret the inconvenience. Because of this, we recommend preparing and efiling your federal return at the same time as your state return(s) on efile.com.

Remember that only efile.com offers unlimited state returns for one low price of $19.95

Do I Need to File Returns for Other States?

You generally have to file a tax return for your resident state. However, you may need to file more than one state return if any of the following are true:

  • You resided in more than one state.
  • You moved from one state to another state.
  • You worked and earned income in another state.
  • You had gambling winnings in another state.
  • You had rental income from another state.
  • You had partnership or S-Corp income from a business based in another state.
  • You had income from an estate or trust with interest in a another state.
  • Your employer improperly withheld taxes for the wrong state.

If you lived or earned income in more than one state, you might need to file returns for multiple states. Depending on your situation, you may need to file part-year resident returns or nonresident returns. Efile.com will determine the correct type of state tax return(s) for you to prepare. Find out more about resident, part-year resident, and nonresident state tax returns.

Only on efile.com, it's the same low price for one or for multiple state returns!

What If I Need More Help Preparing and efiling My State or Federal Returns?

If you have questions about preparing and filing your state and/or federal returns, please do not hesitate to contact efile.com support.