SUBMIT NOW – United Way offers online and drop-off opportunities for tax compliance.
United Way aims to put money back into the pockets of residents with its annual free tax preparation program.
The program is part of United Way’s pillar of financial literacy and has been offered for more than a decade. Certified tax advisors are trying to find all possible deductions for taxpayers, and more than $ 1 million is returned to the community annually, according to program coordinator Cheryl Graham.
“It’s putting money back in taxpayers’ pockets, and this year it’s more important than ever that they get every loan and portion of their refund and earnings credits they’re entitled to,” said Graham. “This is what our program is about to make sure you get everything you are entitled to back.”
The program will look a little different this year due to COVID-19. Effective immediately, taxpayers can collect tax return packages from the Kokomo-Howard County Public Library locations. Taxpayers can do the paperwork at home and then return it by filing the package in a KHCPL book. The packages will be picked up by United Way employees. However, prior to filing, tax advisors must visually confirm taxpayers’ IDs. This can be done through a quick video call or a face-to-face meeting.
This service is offered to individuals and families with a combined household income of $ 60,000 or less.
Graham said the packages will also be available virtually in the near future. To request one, send an email to email@example.com.
Those who can pay their own taxes are encouraged to use one of two free online tax programs. The simplest one, www.myfreetaxes.com, is free for individuals and families with annual incomes of $ 66,000 or less. The program is a free online tax preparation tool provided by H&R Block and United Way partnerships.
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This year, taxpayers of all income levels can request the TaxSlayer software by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
For those who have not received a payment for the economic impact (stimulus check) they were entitled to, they can apply for Recovery Rebate Credit and receive the funds as a tax return.
“This is for the people who haven’t received their stimulus check,” said Graham. “Even if they have no income, they can only submit to get that. If they haven’t got their $ 600 this time around, they have to file in to get that. “
Due to the limited number of certified tax advisors, Graham encouraged anyone who could try filing their taxes online themselves. She emphasized that MyFreeTaxes is simple and only asks simple, direct questions.
“We could never have enough resources to help everyone who wants their taxes to be done by us. That’s just an impossibility so we want to empower people to do it themselves and become self sufficient in this very scary and intimidating area, ”she said. “MyFreeTaxes is easy. It is a run down version of TaxSlayer. So that’s the difference between the two. It is much easier. TaxSlayer is the complete package. “
In addition to the program that helps taxpayers, Graham said it also helps the community.
“This program here is the way we are giving money back to people directly. What we also know is that the people we serve will get the money back when they get the money back. They buy their fridges. They won’t have that much money for a year so many of them are planning to fix their cars and do some kind of upgrade in their household. So that has a direct impact on their quality of life and goes straight back into our economy. “
For more information on tax preparation and the materials required for tax preparation, please visit the United Way website at https://unitedwayhoco.org/tax-preparation/. Questions can be directed to Cheryl Graham at 765-450-7619 ext. 320 or by email to email@example.com.