The Earn It, Keep It, Save It coalition, the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program and the Internal Revenue Service are offering free tax preparation to Utah. 

Free tax help is available for those who have low to moderate income ($56,000 or less); seniors; the disabled, working families and those who speak English as a second language, said Shara Bastian, VITA manager.  

“Local volunteers have been certified through the Six County IRS VITA program to prepare tax returns, provide information on credits, deductions and allowable expenses that taxpayers may be eligible for and electronically file both federal and state tax returns at no charge,” Bastian said.  Free tax help sites are located in the Six County region including various locations in Richfield, Junction, Loa, Fillmore, Delta, Nephi and Ephraim.

An important item community tax volunteers will be checking to see if area residents are eligible for is the Earned Income Tax Credit or EITC.  

“The EITC is for individuals who work but don’t make a lot of money, Bastian said. “In 2019, if you made $55,952 or less, you may qualify for this refundable credit.”

Refundable means even if you didn’t have any federal income tax withheld on wages earned, individuals may still be eligible for the refund.  The EITC could be worth as much as $6,557 for a married couple with three or more children.  

Individuals need to bring with them the following items when seeking free tax help — 

• photo identification for themselves (and their spouses).

• Social Security Numbers (SSNs) or Individual Tax Identification Numbers (ITINs) for each person listed on the tax return. 

• All wage and earnings statements, such as a W-2.

• Interest, dividend or miscellaneous income and/or mortgage interest paid statements, such as Forms 1099 or 1098.

• If applicable, the Form 1095-A, Health Insurance Marketplace Statement.

• Proof of health insurance; amounts paid for day care and the day care provider’s identifying number (SSN or EIN).

• A copy of last year’s tax return if available and any other information concerning income and expenses for 2019.  

• If filing jointly, both spouses must be present to sign the required forms.

“Consider using direct deposit if you are getting a tax refund,” Bastian said. “With direct deposit, the IRS could issue your federal tax refund in 21 days or less.  You will need to bring bank account and routing identification numbers for direct deposit.”

The Six County VITA program will also be hosting a Taxathon Event to bring awareness to community members about the EITC Friday, Jan. 31, from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., in the basement training room B20 at the Sevier County Administration Building, 250 North Main in Richfield.  Individuals will be able to be enter to win a $50 gift card from Walmart for filing a tax return or starting the process of filing a return. 

 To find the nearest free tax help site or additional information online, go to utahtaxhelp.org.  To schedule an appointment or for additional information, call Bastian at (435) 893-0735.

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