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United Way of Southwest Louisiana Providing Free Income-Tax Preparation
United Way of Southwest Louisiana’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) initiative is open for free tax preparation. Appointments can be made at the site of choice by dialing 211 and specifying in-person prep with covid protocols or a new low-risk drop-off.
IRS Certified volunteers will supply free tax prep for any individual or family earning less than $57,000 in income for tax year 2020. VITA is designed for low-to-moderate income individuals, persons with disabilities, senior citizens and limited English speaking residents who qualify for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC).
“We know only 78% of families qualified to receive the EITC actually claim it each year,” explains Denise Durel, president and CEO of United Way of Southwest Louisiana. “VITA volunteers make sure our hard-working families and seniors get the credits they are entitled to which means more money returns to our community. It’s a win-win for our local economy and those struggling this year more than ever.”
Those wishing to make an appointment for in-person or drop-off must DIAL 211. Multiple sites are open for appointments and more are being added. A up-to-date list is maintained online at unitedwayswla.org/vita or by dialing 211. The waiting area at the sites is for the tax client only and no other guests will be allowed inside.
Those wishing to prepare their own taxes can go online to unitedwayswla.org/vita and click the myfreetaxes link.
VITA volunteers helped return $4.1 million in credits and refunds to Southwest Louisiana in 2020. Volunteers are trained by United Way of Southwest Louisiana and receive IRS Certification upon finishing. Anyone interested in volunteering at a VITA site can visit unitedwayswla.org/volunteer-vita.
Any organization or agency willing to host a VITA site can contact United Way of Southwest Louisiana at 337.433.1088 ext. 210.
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About United Way of Southwest Louisiana
United Way of Southwest Louisiana is an authority on recognizing, measuring and mobilizing the resources to target community needs in Southwest Louisiana with a focus on four pillars: Education, Economic Mobility, Health and Basic Needs. For 80 years, we have supported efforts in Allen, Beauregard, Cameron, Calcasieu and Jeff Davis Parish that improve the quality of life for all residents through volunteerism and resource development.