Free Tax Preparations Available For Connecticut Residents

Throughhrough April 12th, 2014, YWCA Hartford Region will serve as a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) site. VITA offers free income tax preparation for lower-to-moderate working individuals and families with household incomes up to nearly $52,000. The program helps families boost earned incomes, pay down debt and work toward saving for the future.

IRS-certified community volunteers prepare and electronically file tax returns and ensure that individuals and families receive their proper credits, such as the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and Child Tax Credit. EITC’s often go unclaimed due to the complexity of the forms and lack of awareness to those who are eligible. EITC credits averaged $1,400 per household last year at YWCA’s VITA site.

Individuals who usually do not file because they do not owe any taxes are encouraged to visit a VITA site to find out if they qualify for a tax refund under the EITC program. Taxpayers can receive their tax refund quickly and have it directly deposited into their bank account.

In 2013, YWCA served 200 filers – resulting in $319,262 in state and federal refunds and credits to working families.  Refunds included $101,865 in EITC and $22,036 in child tax credits.

Tax preparers will be available by appointment only at 135 Broad Street Hartford, CT 06105 on Tuesdays and Wednesday evenings from 5:00 – 8:00 PM and Saturdays 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM. Please call United Way 2-1-1, a free, multilingual helpline open 24-hours a day, seven days a week, or YWCA at (860) 525-1163, ext. 450 to schedule an appointment or to receive further information about the program.

Additionally, individuals or families with a household income up to $58,000 may file their own taxes for free online at: www.myfreetaxes.com/unitedway.

The 2014 VITA and MyFreeTaxes Partners are: Bank of America and its Foundation; Bloomberg Foundation; City of Hartford/Opportunities Hartford Initiative; Community Accounting Aid and Services; Hartford Foundation for Public Giving; Human Resources Agency of New Britain; Internal Revenue Service; Liberty Bank Foundation; United Way of Central and Northeastern Connecticut; United Way of Connecticut/2-1-1; The Village for Families & Children; Walmart Foundation; and Webster Bank.

Also, IRS and a free online tax service for those earning less than $58,000 a year.

The Free File Alliance, a coalition of industry-leading tax software companies partnered with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), today announced the launch of the 2014 Free File program. Starting today, every taxpayer with a 2013 Adjusted Gross Income of $58,000 or less may visit http://www.irs.gov/freefile to prepare, complete and e-file their federal tax returns at no cost.

In addition to offering comprehensive tax services for 70 percent of taxpayers, Free File also offers basic federal e-filing services with no income limitations. This basic e-filing service, called Free File Fillable Forms, allows taxpayers who are familiar with tax law and need no preparation assistance to complete and file their federal income tax electronically. There are no income limitations to use Free File Fillable Forms, which will be available starting January 31.

“By providing online commercial tax preparation software at no cost, Free File has saved American taxpayers $1.2 billion since it began in 2003,” said Tim Hugo, executive director of the Free File Alliance. “Free File is the only service that allows users to access and compare free tax software options from more than a dozen top companies. With Free File, industry-leading tax software is all in one place, and it’s all free.

Hugo continued, “This year, we invite all taxpayers making $58,000 or less to visit www.irs.gov/freefile and take the guesswork out of doing their taxes.”

IRS Free File is available at www.irs.gov/freefile, which provides a list of Free File Alliance member companies and their free tax software offerings. Users may either choose the company that fits their needs or utilize the “help me find a company” tool. After selecting a company, users will be transferred to the company’s website to prepare, complete and electronically file their federal income tax returns. The service is also available in Spanish.

The Free File Alliance is also partnered with the IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA) – a walk-in service for low-to-moderate income taxpayers. Free File software will be available at self-assist kiosks at VITA sites in 22 states and the District of Columbia. Through this partnership with VITA, the Free File Alliance will be able to provide preparation and e-filing services for taxpayers who do not have Internet access at home, as well as those who want to e-file, but need additional, in-person assistance.

Free File Alliance member companies have continually worked with the IRS to strengthen the Free File program, and taxpayers have consistently reported that it is user-friendly and efficient. Responding to a 2009 IRS survey, 96 percent of users said they found Free File easy to use, while 98 percent said they would recommend the program to others.

 About the Free File Alliance

The Free File Alliance, a coalition of industry-leading tax software companies, has partnered with the IRS since 2003 to help low and middle-income Americans prepare, complete and e-file their federal tax returns online. The Free File Alliance is committed to giving 70 percent of Americans free access to the industry’s top online tax preparation software. About 40 million returns have been filed through Free File since its inception. For more information, visit www.freefilealliance.org.

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