March 10, 1994
Volunteers Help With Tax Returns,
Earned Income Credit Claims
WASHINGTON - There may be no free lunch, but nearly 95,000
volunteers will give free tax help to over three million people this
year. The volunteers, trained through two Internal Revenue Service
programs, staffed 23,000 sites nationwide last year, helping people
who can least afford tax preparation fees.
The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program helps those
with basic tax returns or special needs, such as students,
non-English-speaking residents or military personnel. This year,
VITA is forming partnerships with community groups to help taxpayers
claim the Earned Income Tax Credit (ETIC) for 1993 and take
advantage of the advance ETIC payment option in 1994.
"Our volunteer programs are an important part of our effort to
get the Earned Income Tax Credit to all those who qualify for it and
to encourage eligible taxpayers to receive advance payments of the
credit while they work," said IRS Commissioner Margaret Milner
The ETIC is available to people who have 1993 incomes under
$23,050 and have a child living with them and could be worth as much
as $2,364 in their refund checks. Workers may also claim the credit
each payday instead of waiting until they file tax returns.
Taxpayers who qualify for the credit in 1994 could have advance EITC
payments of up to $102 a month added to their paychecks during the
Volunteers in the Tax Counseling for the Elderly program target
their help to persons age 60 and over, with special emphasis on
shut-ins and those in nursing homes. Since senior citizens may
have a child or grandchild living with them, TCE volunteers also
receive training on claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit.
The volunteer programs are also expanded alternative filing
methods. The American Bar Association's Student Law Division is
working with the IRS to offer free electronic filing through law
school VITA groups. The American Association of Retired
Persons--the largest TCE group--has provided 1040PC software to some
of its sites.
This year's early filing gap continues to shrink -- as of March
5, 1994, the IRS had received 41.7 million returns, about 1.5
million fewer than last year. Federal tax refunds issued now total
over $23.5 billion. At $1,121, the average refund is up more than
Previous | Next
1994 IRS News Releases | News Releases Main | Home