Each year, the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) helps thousands of low- to moderate-income families claim more of the dollars they’ve worked hard to earn.
By offering tax credits of up to $5,800, EITC helps families pay down debt, build savings, pay for childcare, improve job skills or cover any expense they see fit.
1-in-4 Don’t Claim EITC
Yet despite its many benefits, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) estimates that one-in-four eligible recipients don’t claim EITC, mainly due to lack of awareness.
For these reasons and more, Heart of Florida United Way is again reaching out to the local business and nonprofit community to help promote ETIC, as well as more than 30 FREE VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance sites, staffed by IRS certified volunteers.
EITC Helps Mom Purchase Home
It was through VITA services that Orlando resident Teresa Martin* received the FREE, expert help she needed to claim EITC and other credits, which resulted in a sizable refund.
“Dealing with taxes can be stressful for anyone,” Martin said. “In my case, it was even more so since I had adopted my son and had to submit a lot of complicated forms. With the help of a VITA volunteer, I was able to do this and also claim EITC. Thanks to larger refunds, I was able to build savings and eventually purchase a home.”
As part of United Way’s focus on helping families improve their financial stability, our organization has been promoting EITC since 2007. Last year alone, more than 215,745 claims were filed, resulting in more than half a billion dollars being pumped back into the Central Florida economy.
To learn more about EITC, including income guidelines and the location of FREE tax preparation sites, click here or simply dial 2-1-1.
VITA Volunteers Needed
With demand for EITC tax help on the rise, volunteers are needed to help staff local VITA sites from January through mid-April, 2013. IRS certified training will be provided. To learn more about volunteering, click here.
* Name changed to protect privacy.