Build financial stability for families by helping them file their taxes to claim tax credits and refunds.
Volunteer Information Sessions: 1 hour optional sessions to learn more about tax volunteering. Registration encouraged but not required. Bring a friend!
- Tax Prep connects volunteers one-on-one with individuals needing assistance.
- We sponsor 36 VITA community tax sites at churches, schools, colleges, recreation centers and agencies to prepare taxes for individuals and families with low and moderate incomes.
- With tax coaching, volunteers help individuals learn to file taxes using free online software.
- At “closed sites” corporate volunteers serve their own colleagues at the worksite.
- In addition to providing free tax preparation, VITA works to ensure that everyone receives the credits and refunds for which they are eligible.
- Weeknight and Saturday hours at sites throughout the region (list of locations/dates)
- Comprehensive training – in person (Training Calendar) or online (Online Resources).
- Teamwork and support.
- Professional Continuing Education Credits, college internships, service learning opportunities.
Geographic Areas of Service:
- Ohio: Hamilton, Butler, Clermont Counties
- Kentucky: Kenton, Campbell, Boone, Grant Counties
- Indiana: Dearborn County
- Individuals can serve as greeters, screeners, hosts, tax preparers, quality reviewers, coaches, interpreters, technologists, and site coordinators.
- Companies/Unions/Teams can
- Recruit volunteers together
- Train together
- Adopt a community tax site and volunteer together as a group
- Sponsor and run a community tax site
- Offer a “closed” tax site to their colleagues.
- Tax season is January – April
- Training in November/December/January; 6-9 hours of classroom training plus another 6-12 of self-study and testing.
- Volunteers are asked to commit to at least 3 shifts during the tax season
- Each tax shift is 3-4 hours on a weeknight or Saturday; some day hours also available.
- Volunteers must “certify” through IRS; certified volunteers working within the scope of their training are protected from liability.
- Both online and in person training are offered: see details here.
- Up to 18 CEUs (continuing education credits) for CPAs, CFAs and attorneys
- New volunteers shadow experienced volunteers.
- Quality review process assures that multiple volunteers review each return.
Why is this important?
- Families depend on refund of withheld earnings to meet their basic expenses.
- The Earned Income Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit move families and children out of poverty.
- Filing taxes is a legal obligation for almost everyone, yet it requires high levels of education and computer competency.
- Tax returns are required to access student financial aid, health insurance premium credits, home mortgages and many government programs
- Many for-profit tax preparation services are expensive; some entail predatory loans and deceptive practices.
- This program connects annual tax season services to financial education and stabilization.