While the tax season is in full swing, Ladder Up offers free tax preparation services. Ladder Up is a non-profit serving low-income Illinois residents. Individuals earning up to $ 32,000 and families earning up to $ 57,000 are eligible for their free services. In addition to providing tax preparation services, they also assist with the financial assistance process and those who need to help them understand their rights and obligations under US tax laws. Ladder Up aims to help low to middle income families work their way up the economic ladder.
For many financially, 2020 was a challenging year. Tax changes, a global pandemic, and the issuing of stimulus checks have had a big impact on many families. “While 2020 was a difficult year to begin with, the associated new pandemic aid and tax change will require additional help in navigating this uniquely challenging year,” said Executive Director Kathleen Stark.
The tax assistance program is open until April 15th. In its 26th year of tax support for residents, this year’s program is only offered by agreement and a tax model. Residents can make an appointment by calling or visiting their website. Then they can hand in their documents to a ladder up volunteer. The residents do not have to wait until a return is prepared. Volunteers scan and prepare returns remotely. The rest of the process can be completed virtually or in person by appointment.
Many are confused about the impact of the economic reviews paid in 2020. The Executive Director of Ladder Up emphasizes that the 2020 economic reviews will not be considered as taxable income when filing your returns.
“The stimulus payments are not taxed as income. However, you may be eligible for the “Recovery Discount Credit”. This will either increase the refund of money or reduce the taxes you may owe. “–Kathleen Stark
For more information about Ladder Up or to make an appointment, visit the website at ladderup.org or contact them at (312) 588-6900.
Danielle Sanders is a writer and journalist based in Chicago. Find her on social media @DanieSandersOfficial.