News Release: Agency partnering to help five out of five eligible workers claim federal tax credit

NEWS RELEASE

Agency partnering to help five out of five eligible workers claim federal tax credit

 

Credit boosts average refund by $2,100

 

Pontiac, Mich., January 27, 2012 – Thousands of workers in Oakland and Livingston Counties could overlook a special federal tax credit because they don't know it exists. As a result, they could miss out on up to $5,751 extra in their federal income tax refunds through the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). Last year, on average, the credit boosted refunds for eligible workers by $2,100.

 

OLHSA, A Community Action Agency, in partnership with Accounting Aid Society tax volunteers, is offering comprehensive services to all tax clients. Free available services include assisting clients with state and federal tax returns, including the EITC credit. Additional services may include completing applications for food assistance and State Emergency Relief form (SER) online, providing budgeting and credit counseling, and matching the client with numerous other OLHSA services.

Please note times and locations online at www.olhsa.org/events. Appointments are needed Wednesdays through February and March and walk-ins are welcome on Saturdays. Call (866) 673-0873 for Livingston County (Mott Community College/M-Tech/MI Works, 1240 Packard Dr., Howell) and (248) 209-2618 for Oakland County (OLHSA, A Community Action Agency, 196 Cesar E. Chavez Ave., Pontiac). Wednesday appointments are available in Oakland County only. [Full listing: Livingston   |   Full listing: Oakland]

 

Anyone earning $49,078 or less from wages, self-employment or farming in 2011 should see if they qualify. Eligible worker must file federal income tax returns, even if they are not required to file, and specifically must claim the credit to get it.

 

Many people will qualify for the first time this year due to economic changes in their income or changes in their marital or parental statuses according to the IRS.  The agency estimates four out of five eligible workers currently claim their EITC. 

 

"We want to raise that to five out of five,” Borngesser said.  “They earned it. Now they need to file and claim it, then have it in their hands and bank accounts."

 

To help preparers, either volunteer or paid, accurately determine EITC eligibility and prepare returns, individuals should bring:

  • Photo proof of identification
  • Social Security cards for themselves, their spouse and all dependents or Social Security number verification letters issued by the Social Security Administration
  • Birth dates for all persons listed on the tax return
  • Wage and earning statement(s) Forms W-2, W-2G, and 1099-R, from all employers
  • Interest and dividend statements from banks (Forms 1099)
  • Copies of their prior year federal and state returns, if available
  • Bank routing and account numbers for direct deposit of their refunds
  • Other relevant information about income and expenses
  • Amounts paid for day care, if applicable, and the day care provider's identifying number.
 

Both spouses must be present to sign joint returns. Anyone paid to prepare federal income tax returns is required by law to sign the return and enter their Preparer Tax Identification Number.

EITC is a financial boost for working people in a recovering economy and allows more funds to flow within your community.                        


OLHSA  is a Community Action Agency improving the quality of life for people facing crisis while strengthening families, communities, seniors and youth since 1964. Over 320,000 services were provided in 2010 in the pursuit of helping people and changing lives.  www.olhsa.org

 

Media Contact:                Adela Piper   |   586-212-4792   |   adelap@olhsa.org