FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 2, 2016
Free Tax Assistance Available at Goodwill®’s VITA Site
Tax Awareness Day event to be held at Goodwill this Saturday, February 6
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (February 2, 2016) – For the seventh straight year, Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont will offer free tax preparation services to qualified individuals through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program. Offered in partnership with Community Link and the Internal Revenue Service, this volunteer-driven program provides free tax assistance by certified tax preparers to individuals or families with an adjusted gross income of $54,000 or less.
Goodwill is operating the VITA site at its Career Development Center, located at 2122 Freedom Drive in Charlotte, now through Thursday, April 14. The site will be open each Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 6 – 9 p.m. by appointment only and each Saturday from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. for walk-ins. The service will be closed on Saturday, March 5 and Saturday, March 26.
Goodwill encourages taxpayers to ask about the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), which provides tax breaks for some working families who earn up to $53,267 and can provide refunds up to $6,242. The IRS estimates that nearly 20 percent of eligible workers do not claim the EITC each year because they lack awareness of the program, cannot afford costly tax preparation fees or fear they will lose public benefits by filing – dollars that ultimately go unclaimed.
To educate local taxpayers about tax benefits including the Earned Income Tax Credit, Goodwill will host a free Tax Awareness Day this Saturday, February 6 from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. at its Career Development Center, located at 2122 Freedom Drive in Charlotte. Pre-registration is not required for this event, which will offer food and beverages, plus educational tools from local community partners.
“The average tax return can cost upwards of $200 – money that can be used instead to cover the cost of living such as food staples, rent and bills. Our partnership with the VITA program helps people keep their hard-earned money,” said LaToya Lowery, development and training specialist at Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont. “In 2015, we completed 657 tax returns, resulting in thousands of dollars in refunds being returned to local residents. This year we hope that even more people will take advantage of this free service.”
To schedule an appointment for Goodwill’s VITA site, or to see if you qualify for free tax preparation, call (704) 761-VITA (8482) from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Monday – Thursday or schedule an appointment online at www.clvita.org, where you can also find more information on VITA sites in our area.
Please bring the following items with you for tax preparation assistance:
- Proof of identification (Photo ID), for both taxpayer and spouse if married filing a joint tax return. If filing a joint return with your spouse, both individuals must be present to sign. Have birth dates for you, your spouse and dependents on the tax return available.
- Social Security Cards for you, your spouse and dependents OR a Social Security Number verification letter issued by the Social Security Administration OR Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) assignment letter for you, your spouse and dependents. You must also bring proof of foreign status if applying for an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN).
- Wage and earning statement(s) including: Form W-2; W-2G; 1095-A, B or C or Affordable Health Care statements; 1098-T tuition statement for college and technical students; 1099-R; 1099-Misc; Social Security Benefit Statement and other sources from all employers; as well as Forms 1099 interest and dividend statements from banks.
- A copy of last year’s federal and state returns if available.
- For direct deposit of any refund, proof of bank account and routing numbers, such as a blank check.
- Total paid for childcare provider with childcare provider’s tax identification number (the provider’s Social Security Number or the provider’s business Employer Identification Number) if appropriate.
Proceeds from the sale of donations in Goodwill retail stores fund job training and employment services free of charge for unemployed and underemployed individuals as they upgrade their skills to enter the competitive workforce. In 2015, Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont provided employment services to 12,000 individuals and placed 1,600 job seekers in local jobs. For more information about Goodwill and its programs, visit www.goodwillsp.org.
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About Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont
Goodwill has been serving individuals and families in the Southern Piedmont region of North and South Carolina for more than 50 years. Goodwill operates 22 retail stores and has more than 45 donation sites in the region. Proceeds from the sale of donated goods fund job training and employment services for individuals facing barriers to employment such as lack of skills, experience or education and criminal backgrounds. In 2015, Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont provided employment services to 12,000 individuals and placed 1,600 job seekers in local jobs thanks to donations and purchases from the community. For more information, visit www.goodwillsp.org.
Molly Thompson | PR & Social Media Manager | Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont | Phone: (704) 332-0262 | Email: email@example.com
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