Mayor Fischer, community leaders announce free tax preparation service for eligible Louisville residents
Mayor Greg Fischer and other community leaders today announced the opening of free federal and state income tax preparation for eligible residents.
The Louisville Asset Building Coalition’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance, or VITA, and AARP Tax Aide programs provide trained, IRS-certified volunteers to offer free tax services via online or at select drop-off sites. The service is available to individuals and families who earned less than $66,000 in 2020.
VITA and AARP volunteers will also help determine if residents are eligible for the Earned Income Tax Credit, a refundable federal tax credit for low- and middle-income working individuals and families. Eligibility for the EITC is based on income, the number of family members and other criteria, such as the amount of a family’s credit. Working families who earn up to $57,400 may be eligible, with average credits last year nearly $2,500.
"Now more than ever, tax refunds provide a critical boost to the household budget for many Louisville families,” the Mayor said. “For many working families, free help with taxes and guidance in qualifying for the EITC can be a game-changer. That’s money that could be used to start a savings account, buy a car, get braces for a child, pay books and college tuition, or start a college fund for their children."
Last year, the VITA campaign and Louisville AARP sites processed nearly 13,000 returns, adding more than $16 million to the local economy, including nearly $3.5 million in Earned Income Tax Credits to residents.
February 12 is the first official day for filing tax returns. While free tax filing will not happen face-to-face as in past years due COVID-19 pandemic, VITA free tax assistance services are available through select drop-off sites and online methods. Individuals can visit getyourrefund.org to have their taxes prepared online, and starting Monday, February 8, may also call 502-305-0005 for more information.
The VITA free tax preparation sites are located at:
- Americana Community Center, 4801 Southside Dr.
- Bates Community Development Corporation, 1228 Jackson St.
- Eastern Area Community Ministries, 9104 Westport Rd.
- Louisville Urban League, 1535 W. Broadway
- Portland Promise Center, 1831 Baird St.
- Salt and Light Community Development, 3025 Gerald Dr.
- Sun Valley Community Center, 6505 Bethany Lane
- United Crescent Hill Ministries, 150 State St.
- Wesley House Community Services, 5114 Preston Hwy.
For more details including hours of operations at VITA locations, visit http://labcservices.org or call Metro United Way’s 211 help referral service.
Also, visit the website for information about a free service for those interested in filing their taxes online. Volunteers may visit MyFreeTaxes.com to access free software programs offered in partnership by United Way Worldwide and TaxSlayer. Eligible clients may also visit labcservices.org to access the IRS Free File Program Delivered by Turbo Tax. LABC is proud to be a member of the Tax Time Allies, and has received funding from the Intuit Freedom Foundation to increase access to VITA and free software programs.
The other service, AARP Tax-Aide, has a mission to serve any person who comes through the door, with special attention to those 60 and older. AARP select drop-off sites in Louisville will open Feb. 15.
For future updates including online filing options AARP Tax Aide plan to offer, visit http://www.aarp-tax-aide-lou.org.
To help preparers accurately determine EITC eligibility and prepare returns, individuals should bring:
Picture ID and Social Security cards for everyone listed on the return
Copy of 2019 tax return with all attachments and schedules
W-2s and 1099s from your employers
Other 1099s for interest, dividends, state tax refund or other income
Form 1099-G for any unemployment compensation received during the year
1095-A for health insurance
1098 for education credit, plus a detailed financial statement from the school
Bank account number and routing number for direct deposit as well as savings account number (if applicable)
Childcare information, including Provider ID and actual amounts paid
Summarized list of other income/expenses for those who itemize or are self-employed
Additional tax information that may be required
Volunteers are key to the VITA and AARP programs’ success. Last year, more than 200 volunteers dedicated more than 5,600 hours to offer free tax preparation services.
This year, partners at LHOME will also be assisting our community throughout the tax filing season through their Financial Navigators program. Financial Navigators can help residents address their financial concerns, answer common tax questions, and provide structured guidance and referrals to other services regarding their financial needs. Schedule a free telephone session by visiting https://finnav.org/lou; email [email protected]; or call 502/657-6624.
The work of the Louisville Asset Building Coalition and the AARP Tax Assistance Program is made possible by Metro United Way, Louisville Metro Government, the IRS, the AARP Tax-Aide Foundation and dozens of other partners.