Free Tax Assistance Available Beginning Today for Eligible Central Indiana Residents

Last year, more than 8,500 tax returns were prepared for individuals and families at no cost, resulting in more than $10 million in refunds

 

Each year, thousands of Central Indiana residents pay hundreds of dollars to file their taxes, without knowing they may be eligible for free filing. Indy Free Tax Prep, a network of Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites, works to help ease the financial burden of the tax preparation process and ensure individuals and families with a household income of $66,000 or less receive their full tax refund.

 

Indy Free Tax Prep will offer services in Marion, Hendricks, Morgan and Boone counties. Taxpayers may visit IndyFreeTaxPrep.com or call 2-1-1 for more details, locations, hours and information to schedule an appointment at a nearby site. Taxpayers with a combined household income of $66,000 or less can also choose to self-file their taxes online for free at myfreetaxes.com.

 

Several tax law changes resulted from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act that taxpayers should be aware of:

  • Personal exemptions for the taxpayer, spouse and dependents have been eliminated.
  • The Standard deduction has nearly doubled for all filers, which means fewer people will likely itemize deductions.
  • For the Child Tax Credit and Additional Child Tax Credit, the maximum credit has increased and the income threshold at which the credit begins to phase out has increased.
  • new credit of up to $500 may be available for each dependent who does not qualify for the child tax credit.

 

Taxpayers are urged to do a paycheck checkup (https://www.irs.gov/paycheck-checkup) and adjust their withholdings as needed by completing a new W-4 withholding certificate.  More information about the tax reform can be found by visiting https://www.irs.gov/tax-reform.

 

In addition, Southeast Community Services (SECS) has developed a collaboration with Franklin College to train college students to become VITA tax preparers. The curriculum allows students to take a course each year while in school, build relationships with the community, and gain hands-on experience in tax preparation. The program also encourages students to become long-term volunteers. Southeast Community Services has served as a VITA site for over 16 years and offers financial coaching, including ways to reduce debt and increase credit scores year-round.

 

Indy Free Tax Prep volunteers are certified by the IRS. Individuals interested in becoming an Indy Free Tax Prep volunteer can visit https://uwci.org/financial-stability/ for more information.

 

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About United Way of Central Indiana: United Way is a community of donors, advocates, volunteers, and partners who fight for the health, education, and financial stability of every person in every community. United Way invites all members of our community to LIVE UNITED by giving, advocating and volunteering to improve lives in Central Indiana. Visit www.uwci.org to learn more.