NEWS RELEASE | 2019 VITA Tax Program End of Season Results
For Release: IMMEDIATE RELEASE
2019 VITA Tax Program End of Season Results
FORT WAYNE, IN (July 18, 2019) – United Way of Allen County focuses on strategies and resources that provide families with the tools to make wise financial choices. The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program (VITA) helps families or individuals that earn a gross income less than $54,000 annually qualify for free tax preparation. IRS certified volunteer tax preparers help residents file their taxes & claim available credits. United Way partners with Volunteer Center and Catholic Charities Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend to offer the VITA program in Allen, DeKalb, Noble, and Steuben counties.
The VITA program ran from January 26 – April 10, 2019 with funding from multiple grants, including $40,000 in funding from the Internal Revenue Service. This year there was an increase in returns, with 3,482 returns completed. Catholic Charities, United Way’s partner in DeKalb, Noble, and Steuben counties, had an increase of 38% for the 2018 tax year. My Free Taxes is also a free tax filing service available online, if your household earned less than $66,000 in 2018. With the tax preparation sites reported and My Free Taxes results in, the grand total for refund amounts for state and federal returns is $3,316,344.00 for the four-county area.
The VITA program continues to show success for all agencies and individuals involved year to year, however, it cannot be done without our volunteers. If you would like to learn more about becoming a VITA volunteer in Allen County, you may contact Volunteer Center at (260) 424-3505 or www.volunteerfortwayne.org. For DeKalb, Noble, and Steuben counties, you may contact Catholic Charities Auburn Office at (260) 925-0917.
When the community works together, resources are provided to individuals and families that may have otherwise not been able to file their taxes. “Most of the taxpayers we serve are working families, many of them working multiple jobs, yet continuing to struggle to cover basic needs such as food and housing. Maximizing their tax refund brings much needed financial resources for everyday basic survival while providing some level of financial stability” explains Ani Etter, Executive Director of the Volunteer Center and United Way’s VITA partner for Allen County. Currently the 2018 tax year is completed, however, if you have not filed yet, you have until October using www.MyFreeTaxes.com.