Get Free Tax Help!

Sacramento Region, CA (MPG)  |  Source: United Way
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Free tax help continues through end of March. Photo courtesy Kristin Th├ębaud Communications, United Way

In one day, 500 local residents received free help with their tax return preparation, thanks to the kickoff of the Sacramento Coalition for Working Families’ Volunteer Income Tax Assistance effort, led by United Way.

At the Jan. 30th event, IRS-certified volunteers provided free basic tax return preparation with electronic filing and informed taxpayers about special tax credits for which they may qualify, including the federal and state Earned Income Tax Credits, Child Tax Credit, and Credit for the Elderly or the Disabled. VITA is a national IRS program and offers free help to people who make a limited income and need help preparing their tax returns. More appointments are available through the end of March for local households that earned $54,000 or less in 2015. Visit www.yourlocalunitedway.org/VITA or call 2-1-1.

“We want to make sure as many households as possible in the Sacramento area are financially stable, and that starts with not spending unnecessary money on tax preparation and making sure they receive the maximum refund to which they are entitled,” said Stephanie Bray, United Way California Capital Region president and CEO.

Local households that made $62,000 or less in 2015 can qualify to file their state and federal taxes online for free at MyFreeTaxes.com, thanks to a national partnership between United Way, Goodwill Industries and the National Disability Institute. MyFreeTaxes.com helps people save an average of $200 in tax preparer fees. The website guides users through federal and state filing using software powered by H&R Block. Users need a valid email address and income forms. The eight-year-old program is available in all 50 states.

Both the in-person and online filing opportunities are designed to help households receive the maximum Earned Income Tax Credits of $6,000, now available federally and through the state. This is the first year that California is offering a state Earned Income Tax Credit to benefit California’s working families, increase use of the federal credit and increase availability of free tax preparation services.

To donate or volunteer, visit www.yourlocalunitedway.org.

Source: Kristin Thébaud Communications, United Way