You may have heard of VITA, the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program, administered by the IRS in partnership with nonprofits nationwide. Susquehanna’s employees volunteer in various capacities with VITA all season long. Here’s how VITA can help you or someone you know.
We’ve all seen it. People on the side of the road dressed as the Statue of Liberty holding “Taxes Done Here!” signs. Fancy commercials touting the promise of major refunds. And worst of all, notices hanging in pawn shop store fronts for “instant pre-paid income tax checks.” There are so many ways that hard-working individuals and families get taken advantage of during tax season. VITA offers free tax help to low- to moderate-income individuals and families (generally $49,000 annual household income or less) who need assistance completing their federal, state and local tax returns. Certified volunteers sponsored by various nonprofit organizations (including United Ways, community action programs, AARP chapters and more) receive more than 20 hours of in-depth training to help prepare returns in communities across the country.
VITA sites are usually located at community and neighborhood centers, libraries, schools, shopping malls and other convenient locations. Most locations also offer free electronic filing. To locate the nearest VITA site, call 1-800-906-9887 or check this partial VITA site list online (This list does not include every VITA site).
Susquehanna employees participate as committee members, greeters at VITA sites, and as tax preparers for VITA programs in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Maryland. We thank these employees for their tireless efforts, and encourage everyone to make sure that friends, family, neighbors and colleagues are aware of the VITA program.
Items you need to bring to the VITA sites to have your tax returns prepared:
- Proof of identification
- Social Security Cards for you, your spouse and dependents and/or a Social Security Number verification letter issued by the Social Security Administration
- Birth dates for you, your spouse and dependents on the tax return
- Wage and earning statement(s) Form W-2, W-2G, 1099-R, from all employers
- Interest and dividend statements from banks (Forms 1099)
- A copy of last year’s federal and state returns, if available
- Bank routing numbers and account numbers for Direct Deposit
- Total paid for daycare provider and the daycare provider’s tax identifying number (the provider’s Social Security Number or the provider’s business Employer Identification Number)
- To file taxes electronically on a married-filing-joint tax return, both spouses must be present to sign the required forms.