The Internal Revenue Service said that individuals and businesses will no longer receive paper income tax packages in the mail.

The IRS said it is taking this step because of the continued growth in electronic filing and the availability of free options to taxpayers, as well as to help reduce costs. The tax packages contained the forms, schedules and instructions for filing a paper income tax form.

In early October, the IRS will send a postcard to individuals who filed paper returns last year and did not use a tax preparer or tax software, and to businesses that normally receive their tax forms and publications from the IRS.

Most businesses receive their tax products from a tax professional or tax software, the IRS noted. The postcard will explain how to get the tax forms and instructions needed to file future returns.

The forms and instructions will be available in early January 2011. 

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