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Free Tax Return Preparation For You By Volunteers

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    Free Tax Return Preparation For You By Volunteers

    If you don't feel confident enough to fill out and file your federal tax return yourself, there are several possibilites where you can get your taxes done at no cost through the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program.

    The VITA program trains community volunteers to help individuals with special federal tax credits such as the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), Child Tax Credit, and Credit for the Elderly for which you may qualify. In addition to free tax return preparation assistance, many of the places where you can get this free assistance also offer free electronic filing (e-filing). Individuals taking advantage of the e-file program will receive their refunds in half the time compared to returns filed on paper even faster if you have your refund deposited directly into your bank account.

    The VITA Program offers free tax help to low- to moderate-income ($36,000 and below) people who cannot prepare their own tax returns. Volunteers sponsored by various organizations receive training to help prepare basic tax returns in communities across the country. VITA sites are generally located at community and neighborhood centers, libraries, schools, shopping malls, and other convenient locations. Most locations also offer free electronic filing. To locate the nearest VITA site, call 1-800-829-1040.

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    The Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) Program provides free tax help to people age 60 and older. Trained volunteers from non-profit organizations provide free tax counseling and basic income tax return preparation for senior citizens. Volunteers who provide tax counseling are often retired individuals associated with non-profit organizations that receive grants from the IRS.

    As part of the IRS-sponsored TCE Program, AARP offers the Tax-Aide counseling program at more than 9,000 sites nationwide during the filing season. Trained and certified AARP Tax-Aide volunteer counselors help people of low-to-middle income with special attention to those age 60 and older.

    For more information on TCE call 1-800-829-1040. To locate the nearest AARP Tax-Aide site, call 1-888-227-7669 or visit <A HREF="">AARP's Internet site</A>.

    I volunteer

    This is my first year as a volunteer in this program - who would have thought that doing other people's taxes could be so much fun!

    I received a day's worth of training from the IRS, using IRS software. If you are comfortable doing your own taxes and using software, I recommend volunteering as a learning experience...if nothing else you get free insights into your own tax situation and info about new tax policy.