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Free Tax Assistance

What is the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program?

  • The VITA program has been offered at United Way of Adams County (UWAC), Inc. since 2007, offering free tax help to people who need assistance in preparing their tax returns. This includes anyone whose income is $57,000 or less and only needs a simple tax return completed.
 

What do I need to bring to my VITA intake tax return appointment?

Please pick up or print the following forms and complete them before your appointment:

 
They can be picked up from the outside clear mailbox to the right of our front door or printed BY CLICKING HERE.

In addition to these completed forms, please bring the following to your appointment:

  • Photo identification (state ID, driver’s license, or passport) for YOU and your SPOUSE (must be valid and unexpired)
  • Social Security cards or Individual Taxpayer Identification Numbers (ITIN) are required for YOU, your SPOUSE, your DEPENDENTS, and everyone included on your tax return to complete your tax return 
  • Birth dates for all on the tax return
  • For married filing separate must have spouses name, date of birth, and Social Security number. If married filing jointly, both spouses must be present at time of signing
  • W-2 forms for every job held last year (2021)
  • 1099 (retirement, interest, dividends, pensions, or misc. income) form if received
  • 1098 mortgage interest form, if you have a mortgage
  • 1098-T tuition statement form, if you or a dependent attended a college or university
  • 1098-E student loan interest form, if interest was paid on student loans
  • 1095-A -Health Insurance Marketplace, if you purchased health insurance through the marketplace
  • EIP Notice 1444-C, for 3rd round economic impact payments ($1,400 per person in spring 2021)
  • Social Security benefit verification statement 2021 (available online from Social Security Office www.ssa.gov)
  • Any other income documents for 2021 (gambling, jury duty, etc.)
  • Bank account and routing information if choosing direct deposit of refund (voided check)
  • Total paid to day care provider and their tax ID number, phone number & address
  • Property tax receipt if you own your home
  • Letter 6419, Advance Child Tax Credit 
  • Other relevant information about your income and expenses
 
If you arrive without ALL your tax documents, photo IDs, or Social Security cards, we WILL NOT be able to prepare your taxes for you. You will have to get the missing forms and schedule a new appointment for a later date.
 

Scheduling an intake tax return appointment:

  • Only one return per appointment slot
  • The average time to complete the intake process is 30 minutes, if all necessary documents are available and complete at the start of the appointment. 
  • Please see above for a list of documents to bring to the appointment, including documents to be filled out prior to the appointment.

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Frequently Asked Questions:

Do I qualify for free tax help?

If your 2021 income is below $57,000 we can help file your taxes for free. However, there are some kinds of taxes we can’t do, including:
  • Business with employees, inventory, depreciation, or expenses for use of your home
  • Rental income
  • Sold property
  • Sold stocks
 

What if I don’t have a Social Security Number (SSN) or card?

You need a valid Social Security Card or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) to file your taxes. 
  • If you have a Social Security Number (SSN) but lost your card, visit the Social Security Website (www.ssa.gov) on how to get a new card.
  • If you aren’t eligible for a Social Security Number (SSN), you should apply for an ITIN. Visit www.irs.gov for more information.
 

Who will help me with my taxes?

  • VITA Volunteers are trained in tax law and income tax preparation, and each one is certified by the IRS. This training includes maintaining the privacy and confidentiality of all taxpayer information. In addition to requiring volunteers to certify their knowledge of the tax laws, the IRS requires a quality review check for every return prepared at the VITA site. We are here to help, and we make sure you get all the refunds and credits you qualify for.
 

Is it really free?

  • Yes, it really is free.
 

When will I get my refund?

  • Please know that once a return is accepted by the IRS or state, it is up to that organization on the timing of the refund.
  • On average, direct deposit refunds are in your bank account in approximately 2 weeks from acceptance. Mailed checks take more time to show up. You can track your refund status at www.irs.gov/refunds.
  • The IRS will likely again withhold refunds for Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) / Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC until sometime in March (2022 date not yet known)
 

Can I file tax returns from other years at the United Way of Adams County site?

  • No
 

What steps are you taking to protect clients and volunteers from the COVID-19 virus?

  • All tax prep appointments are by appointment only.
  • No admittance without an appointment.
  • Face masks are always required for clients and volunteers.
  • Curb-side service during the intake appointment processes, where clients will remain in their vehicles and communicate with intake tax volunteers by phone.
  • No children or guests are allowed inside the building.
 
 

What is the process for intake appointments?

  • Arrive at the United Way office (936 Broadway, Suite F) on the date and time of your scheduled appointment, with all necessary documents and tax forms completed. (see “What do I need to bring to my VITA intake tax return appointment?” listed above)
  • Park in a designated spot and call the posted phone number, and a VITA volunteer will come out to your vehicle to gather your documents.
  • A VITA intake volunteer will call you to discuss any questions about your tax forms while you wait in your car.
  • A VITA volunteer will scan your tax documents while you wait in your car and then return the originals to you.
  • We will process your tax return during the following week and call  you, when it is completed, to schedule an exit appointment to review the return and obtain your signature(s) for electronic transmission.
 
 

What is the process for exit appointments?

  • When your tax return is complete, a VITA volunteer will call you to schedule an exit appointment. Do not come to the office until your scheduled appointment time.
  • A joint return requires both spouses to be present for reviewing, signing, and picking up the tax return.
  • Bring your valid government issued photo ID(s) and your original tax documents given back to you at the end of the intake appointment.
  • Arrive at the United Way office (936 Broadway, Suite F) on the date and time of your scheduled appointment, park in a designated spot and call the posted phone number.
  • A VITA volunteer will call you and ask you to come in when the VITA exit volunteer is ready to review your return with you.
  • Just YOU and YOUR SPOUSE (no children or other guests) will come in the building and the exit appointment office to review your tax return with the VITA volunteer for completeness and accuracy, ask any questions you have, and sign your returns.  By signing your returns, you are agreeing to the acceptance of the returns and allowing the VITA volunteer to electronically submit them. (Face masks are required when inside the building)
  • The VITA volunteer will provide you a copy of your federal and state returns and keep the signed copies for electronically filing your returns.
 

Will the United Way offer financial education classes this year?

  • United Way of Adams County is excited to announce a NEW financial education opportunity in partnership with Community for Christ. The opportunity includes 3 sessions, each spaced one month apart, where you can take a detailed look at your financial situation and how to budget and improve it. 
  • Each person that attends the 3-part series will receive a $40 gift card at the end of the 3rd and final session. You can find out the dates and times and sign up for the series at the United Way office.

Where can I file my taxes for free?




Do you know anyone who has claimed unemployment this year?

 Download the 'Did You Receive Unemployment Benefits?' flyer

As of April 2020, over 23 million Americans filed for unemployment, and 1 out of 4 Americans received unemployment this year. We need your help to reach these individuals and make sure they know that unemployment is taxable income. We do not want them to be caught off guard when filing their tax return next year.

VITA Volunteers prepare returns with:

  • Earned Income Credit (EIC)

  • Child & Dependent Care Credit

  • Education Credit

  • Wages including unemployment & Social Security

  • Mortgage Interest

  • Property Tax Credits

 

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