Through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program IRS-certified volunteers provide free basic income tax return preparation with electronic filing to qualified individuals. The earned income tax credit (EITC) is a tax credit for people who work but earn below a certain amount. A tax credit usually means more money in your pocket because it reduces the amount of tax you owe, resulting in a bigger refund. The EITC is considered an important tool in lifting folks out of poverty.
While the Greater Washington Area has one of the highest percentages of eligible filers taking advantage of the credit, there are still thousands of households not receiving their maximum refund, either because they are unaware of the EITC, or don’t have access to the tax services to help them apply for it. United Way NCA raises awareness and provides access to free tax preparation or assisted self-filing services around the regions.
In collaboration with our community partners and VITA sites, we provide low-income residents with free tax preparation assistance to help them maximize available credits and receive tax refunds. Last year, we mobilized volunteer tax preparers to prepare over 14,000 returns. Through our partnership, last year we helped local families receive a total of $17.7 million in refunds.
Additionally, United Way has partnered with MyFreeTaxes.com to provide a free online filing service for households making less than $66,000 per year. This service is absolutely FREE. Go to www.myfreetaxes.com to file your federal and state tax returns. On average, filers using this service save over $2,000 in tax refunds.
Sign up to volunteer at a local tax site.