What is VITA?
VITA stands for Volunteer Income Tax Assistance. United Way of Greater Lafayette sponsors this program in Tippecanoe County to help working families and individuals prepare their tax returns. Each year, the program has grown to help more and more members of our community. Since our program began in 2010, our volunteers have prepared more than 6,700 tax returns for 3,300 clients who have saved $643,000 in tax fees. Overall, our tax preparation program has brought more than $5 million in refunds back to Tippecanoe County.
Who does VITA help?
The VITA Program offers FREE tax preparation and filing services to people who make $64,000 or less and need assistance preparing their own tax returns. IRS-certified volunteers provide free basic income tax return preparation with electronic filing to qualified individuals in local communities. United Way of Greater Lafayette, Purdue University and Ivy Tech offer VITA locations January through April. If your tax return contains any items that are out of scope for our program, we are unable to prepare your tax return.
A Traditional appointment will take approximately 1- 1/2 hours and you will be with a certified volunteer as they prepare your tax return. A drop off appointment allows you to drop off the tax information (while still participating in the same intake process) while the volunteer prepares your tax return and you are free to leave. We will contact you within (2) business days when your tax return is ready. When you pick up your tax information a volunteer will explain the return and how it was prepared.
Make sure to bring with you to your appointment:
- Social Security card or copy for you, a spouse and any dependents
- Photo ID
- All tax documents
- Bank Routing and Account number for a direct deposit of refund
- Last year's tax return if applicaple
What if I want to prepare my own taxes?
If you less than than $64,000 per year and you would rather prepare your own tax return for free, United Way offers access to My Free Taxes. This tax prep software is powered by H&R Block to prepare your income tax return from the comfort of your home. This site is available to individuals or families with a combined income less than $64,000 in 2016. To get started, you will need:
- A valid email address
- Income Forms (w2's, 1099's, 1098's)
- And other items from the Tax Checklist
If you have a question you can contact myfreetaxes here or call the MyFreeTaxes Hotline sponsored by First Merchants at 855-210-3763 Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday from 9-3pm EST beginning Feb 2nd.