Free Tax Prep Launches with $50,000 from Citizens Bank
Granite United Way and Citizens Bank are partnering to bring the successful free tax preparation program to NH residents again this year. Granite United Way’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program opened for free tax preparation sites with support from Citizens Bank in the form of a $50,000 contribution that supports the program. A formal check presentation launched the program on Tuesday, January 28, 2020 at NeighborWorks Southern NH in Manchester.
This free tax preparation program is available to Individuals and families with household incomes up to $69,000 annually. Taxes are prepared by IRS-certified volunteers who assist low-to-moderate income residents of the state to access the greatest amount of refunds. Both Granite United Way and Citizens Bank share a common goal of encouraging financial stability and recognize the importance of programs like VITA to families and individuals.
The EITC is a support for working people who don’t make a lot of money. According to the IRS, about 1-in-5 eligible New Hampshire residents fail to file for the EITC, leaving an estimated $37 million unclaimed.
“The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program continues to be one of the most effective ways we can help NH residents become more financially stable. The Earned Income Credit combines with the Child Tax Credit has helped to lift more than 16,000 New Hampshire residents out of poverty, on average, over the past three years,” said Patrick Tufts, President and CEO of Granite United Way. “We are proud to partner with Citizens Bank in this effort to help people claim these tax benefits. Their support is critical to the program’s success; ensuring that those who need this assistance most have access to it.”
“Citizens Bank is proud to continue our partnership with the Granite United Way on the VITA Program,” said Joe Carelli, President, Citizens Bank, New Hampshire and Vermont. “By matching our $50,000 commitment with our volunteers on ground serving at VITA sites across the region, we can ensure thousands of Granite State residents can begin their path to financial stability,” said Carelli.
VITA sites are in Salem, Manchester, Concord, Laconia, Franklin, Gorham, Littleton, Plymouth and White River Junction and Windsor County (VT). Additional sites include the Seacoast area and Peterborough.
Scheduling an appointment is simple. Those interested can go to NHTaxHelp.org or call 2-1-1 and schedule their appointment.
“Our VITA program is supported by volunteers who have undergone IRS training on the latest tax information,” said Cary Gladstone, Senior Director of Asset Building Strategies for Granite United Way. “They help identify ways that residents can obtain the largest possible refund.”
Granite United Way also encourages self-filers with internet access and a household income up to $69,000 to take advantage of www.MyFreeTaxes.com. This provides access to filing software at no cost and a toll-free number to call and chat line for tax questions. It is sponsored by United Way Worldwide and H & R Block.
For more information on Granite United Way’s VITA program, contact Cary Gladstone at 603.625.6939 x 128.
The VITA program is a partnership with United Way, Citizens Bank, the IRS and AARP Foundation Tax Aide.