Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA)

VITA is a federal initiative that supports free tax return preparation  for qualified individuals.

man and woman doing taxes

Mission

Mission

What is the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program?

VITA is free tax return preparation that allows individuals making $60,000 or less, persons with disabilities, the elderly and limited English speakers to file their taxes with the Internal Revenue Service each year.

In addition to VITA, the TCE (Tax Counseling for the Elderly ) offers free tax help, particularly for those who are 60 years and older with questions about pensions and retirement related issues.

United Way supports the VITA programs in Washington, DC, and surrounding counties in Maryland and Virginia by:

Eligibility

Sponsors
Government Shutdown Emergency Assistance Fund

Vita Tax Prep Eligibility

Individuals who earn less than $60,000 may be eligible for free tax preparation services through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program and may qualify for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). The EITC helps eligible workers and their families to receive a tax break.

The VITA program allows IRS-certified tax volunteers to provide free income tax preparation services with electronic filing to qualified individuals.

The National Capital Area has a high percentage of eligible filers, yet there are still many individuals are not filing taxes or receiving the maximum refund to which they are eligible, primarily because they are unaware of VITA and EITC. United Way NCA raises awareness and supports access for eligible individuals. View our 2024 EITC Awareness Event webinar to learn more.

To learn more about VITA services and who qualifies, please visit the IRS website: https://www.irs.gov/individuals/free-tax-return-preparation-for-qualifying-taxpayers.

To learn more about who is qualified to receive Earned Income Tax Credits (EITC), please visit the IRS website here: https://www.irs.gov/credits-deductions/individuals/earned-income-tax-credit/who-qualifies-for-the-earned-income-tax-credit-eitc .

How To Help

Get Involved / How to Help

Help By Becoming A Vita Tax Volunteer

VITA volunteers learn to prepare taxes from IRS professionals and use those skills to make a difference in the National Capital Area. This is a valuable service that helps many filers understand their taxes and file them correctly to receive the highest return.

To learn more about how to become a certified VITA volunteer please visit the IRS website here: https://www.irs.gov/individuals/irs-tax-volunteers.

caab PGCC edg catholic charities UPOLogoStacked tax aid

Partner Organizations

Partner Organizations
working quietly

Partner Tax Preparation Organizations

United Way NCA has collaborated with community partners and VITA sites to help qualified individuals complete their tax returns accurately. Previous partners include:

  • Capital Area Asset Builders (CAAB)
  • Prince George’s Community College
  • Enterprise Development Group
  • Catholic Charities
  • United Planning Organization (UPO)
  • Coalition for the Advancement of Financial Education Montgomery MD (CAFE Montgomery)
  • Community Tax Aid
caab PGCC edg catholic charities UPOLogoStacked tax aid

What is the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program?

VITA is free tax return preparation that allows individuals making $60,000 or less, persons with disabilities, the elderly and limited English speakers to file their taxes with the Internal Revenue Service each year.

In addition to VITA, the TCE (Tax Counseling for the Elderly ) offers free tax help, particularly for those who are 60 years and older with questions about pensions and retirement related issues.

United Way supports the VITA programs in Washington, DC, and surrounding counties in Maryland and Virginia by:

Vita Tax Prep Eligibility

Individuals who earn less than $60,000 may be eligible for free tax preparation services through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program and may qualify for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). The EITC helps eligible workers and their families to receive a tax break.

The VITA program allows IRS-certified tax volunteers to provide free income tax preparation services with electronic filing to qualified individuals.

The National Capital Area has a high percentage of eligible filers, yet there are still many individuals are not filing taxes or receiving the maximum refund to which they are eligible, primarily because they are unaware of VITA and EITC. United Way NCA raises awareness and supports access for eligible individuals. View our 2024 EITC Awareness Event webinar to learn more.

To learn more about VITA services and who qualifies, please visit the IRS website: https://www.irs.gov/individuals/free-tax-return-preparation-for-qualifying-taxpayers.

To learn more about who is qualified to receive Earned Income Tax Credits (EITC), please visit the IRS website here: https://www.irs.gov/credits-deductions/individuals/earned-income-tax-credit/who-qualifies-for-the-earned-income-tax-credit-eitc .

Government Shutdown Emergency Assistance Fund

Help By Becoming A Vita Tax Volunteer

VITA volunteers learn to prepare taxes from IRS professionals and use those skills to make a difference in the National Capital Area. This is a valuable service that helps many filers understand their taxes and file them correctly to receive the highest return.

To learn more about how to become a certified VITA volunteer please visit the IRS website here: https://www.irs.gov/individuals/irs-tax-volunteers.

Partner Tax Preparation Organizations

United Way NCA has collaborated with community partners and VITA sites to help qualified individuals complete their tax returns accurately. Previous partners include:

  • Capital Area Asset Builders (CAAB)
  • Prince George’s Community College
  • Enterprise Development Group
  • Catholic Charities
  • United Planning Organization (UPO)
  • Coalition for the Advancement of Financial Education Montgomery MD (CAFE Montgomery)
  • Community Tax Aid
caab PGCC edg catholic charities UPOLogoStacked tax aid

Vita Tax Help DC FAQS

How do I find a VITA tax site near me?
faq arrow
Is VITA still doing taxes?
faq arrow

VITA tax preparation services are available until the deadline for the current-year tax season. Some sites provide assistance with prior-year taxes year-round. Please contact the site provider directly for more information.

How much does tax filing through VITA cost?
faq arrow

VITA provides free tax preparation services for eligible individuals across the United States.  It is available to residents in Washington, DC and the surrounding counties in Maryland and Virginia.

How do I get VITA certified?
faq arrow

There are a variety of VITA volunteer roles available and free training opportunities. VITA volunteers must be certified.  Training and testing can be done in person and online. If you are interested in learning more, visit this IRS page.

What should I bring for VITA tax prep?
faq arrow

Some commonly requested items to bring to your VITA tax prep session include:

  • A Social Security card and/or ITIN for EACH family member. We cannot use prior year files to verify Social Security number
  • A photo ID for each filer
  • W-2 forms for all jobs worked in the tax year being filed
  • Child care provider name, address, and tax ID number or Social Security number
  • All banking account information (a voided check and/or savings deposit slip) to direct deposit your refund
  • A copy of last year’s tax return
  • Any document or information about money you have received from the IRS or state
  • All 1099 forms for other income, if any
  • Any other tax related documents you have received
  • If you are a victim of identity theft, you must bring the letter from the IRS with your PIN number. A new letter is issued from the IRS every year.
  • If you are married and filing jointly, your spouse must be present. If you are married and filing separately, you need your spouse’s name as spelled on his/her Social Security card and your spouse’s Social Security number.
×