SEVCA seeks volunteers for tax prep program

WESTMINSTER — Through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program, Southeastern Vermont Community Action (SEVCA) will again provide free tax preparation for lower-income taxpayers in the 2015 tax season.

In order to help as many families as possible claim available tax credits, SEVCA is recruiting volunteers to staff the program. Local families and individuals will benefit from increased cash, and the local economy will benefit from their increased spending power.

Not only can eligible taxpayers get a larger tax refund through the Earned Income Tax Credit, most also will avoid the expense of tax preparation services.

The IRS has estimated that five million U.S. residents each year fail to claim tax credits they qualify for, forfeiting nearly $3 billion in tax refunds. In 2014 eligible taxpayers accessed more than $161,000 in combined federal and state Earned Income Tax Credits at SEVCA's free tax preparation sites.

VITA is staffed by volunteer tax preparers who provide free tax preparation to taxpayers of low and moderate incomes. Don't know that much about taxes? You'll receive specialized training from a certified VITA instructor as well as IRS online courses. Volunteer opportunities exist for site greeters, tax preparers, and more. Daytime and early evening hours are available.

VITA is looking for individuals who are willing and able to commit three to four hours per week from February through early April 2015.

Tax preparation experience is not necessary, though volunteers for some positions require a commitment to training and certification.

Training sessions will be held in Westminster and at your convenience using online IRS self-study training materials. Continuing on-site training and supervision is provided during the tax preparation season.

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