While the tax filing season is still a few months away, the Jackson County United Way (JCUW) is recruiting new volunteers to be Free Income Tax Assistance (FITA) preparers. JCUW has a bold goal to serve 500 taxpayers this season. In order to assist the growing number of individuals using this free service, the JCUW is inviting the public to learn more about how they can become an IRS certified FITA preparer.
Liz Eaken, an employee of Lannett, will be returning for her 5th season and said, “I became a volunteer for FITA because service to others makes me feel good, and I enjoy math and learning new things. I continue to volunteer because this is a special program that accomplishes so much for our community; it puts thousands of dollars back into client’s pockets increasing their financial security and improving financial education.” Eaken continues, “people should consider volunteering for FITA if they are looking for an effective way to serve others and impact their community. It is a very collaborative, non-intimidating environment where we problem solve together and our FITA family members are excited to mentor new volunteers.”
FITA volunteers help prepare and file basic Federal income tax forms for eligible individuals and/or families. No previous accounting or tax experience is needed to volunteer and flexible training options are available. All volunteers must complete online training and certification in advanced tax preparation. Once certified, volunteers will be available to serve at the Jackson County FITA site located at the Jackson County Public Library (JCPL) Seymour Branch from February to mid-April. Volunteer positions include: Intake Specialists, Tax Preparers, Quality Reviewers, and Site Coordinators.
FITA is a free, basic tax preparation program for individuals or families who generally make $56,000 or less. Since JCUW FITA’s beginning in 2010, 2,863 individuals have received $2,682,924 in Federal and State returns and based on an estimated $368 rapid refund fee, our clients have saved $1,053,584 in rapid refund loans.
If you are interested in serving as a volunteer with the FITA program, please contact Bonita Dobbs at 812-522-5450.