EITC Coalition holds open house events
The Eastern Panhandle EITC Coalition recently held open house events in Martinsburg, Romney and Petersburg. The events were held to provide awareness of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and the VITA program. In addition, several income tax returns were prepared by VITA volunteers during the events.
The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is a federal tax credit for low and moderate income working people. It is designed to encourage and reward work as well as offset payroll and income taxes. The EITC is “refundable,” which means that if it exceeds a worker’s income tax liability, the IRS will refund the balance. Twenty-four states have established their own EITCs to supplement the federal credit.
The VITA Program offers free tax help to people who generally make $50,000 or less and need assistance in preparing their own tax returns. IRS-certified volunteers provide free basic income tax return preparation to qualified individuals in local communities. They can inform taxpayers about special tax credits for which they may qualify such as Earned Income Tax Credit, Child Tax Credit, and Credit for the Elderly or the Disabled.
The need is great in this region, which has a high proportion of elderly and low-income residents who can’t afford to pay a tax preparer or who may risk missing refunds doing taxes themselves. Nationally, the IRS estimates one out of five eligible workers and families miss out on the Earned Income Tax Credit because they don't claim it or don't file a return at all.
For more information, or to schedule an appointment, contact Morgan County Starting Points-Berkeley Springs, 304-258-5600.