From Evanston Now: Free tax preparation help offered

By LIFT on January 19, 2011

Categories: Events, Financial Strength, Our Work

By Bill Smith

LIFT-Evanston will offer free tax preparation services to low-income individuals and families starting Monday, Jan. 31

Trained tax advocates will assist clients with preparing and submitting tax returns online, in addition to identifying eligibility for valuable tax credits like the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC).

LIFT-Evanston is the only IRS-certified Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) site in Evanston. It’s staffed by student volunteers from Northwestern University.

Tax preparation services will be offered Jan. 31 through April 14 on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Tuesdays from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m.; Thursdays from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., and on Saturdays Feb. 5 and 19, March 5 and 19, and April 9 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Clients who file their taxes with paid preparers can spend as much as 20 percent of their refunds on fees or if they try to prepare their taxes independently, they may receive a much smaller refund. The refunds and credits place money directly into the pockets of struggling families, which converts to better economic and social health of local communities.

In addition to giving people a significant economic boost, LIFT’s tax advocates gain experience in preparing taxes, understanding tax code, and strengthening their financial literacy.

For more information and to schedule an appointment at the office at 1932 Dewey Ave., contact LIFT-Evanston at (847) 491-6707.