United Way of Palm Beach County Seeks 200 Volunteers for VITA Program
Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program Provides FREE Tax Services
United Way of Palm Beach County’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program, in partnership with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), is looking for 200 volunteers to help provide free tax services throughout Palm Beach County to those with an annual household income of $66,000 or less.
This is an ideal opportunity for CPAs, retired professionals, college students or any individuals looking to build their accounting and finance skills. Also needed are volunteers who are bilingual in Spanish or Creole. Volunteers who are age 16 or older may serve as greeters and earn community service hours.
Individuals will be trained to become IRS-Certified VITA Volunteer Preparers. The trainings begin December 2 and runs through January 30 with 16 hours of training required for beginners and six hours for returning volunteers. All volunteers are asked to provide a minimum of four hours a week from January 21 – April 15, 2020 at one of the several VITA sites in the county. CPAs are not required to undergo the IRS training, but must pass the IRS certification test.
The VITA Program helps Palm Beach County taxpayers save over $1.5 million in fees they would have paid had they used a tax-preparation service. Additionally, research shows that taxpayers receiving refunds through returns processed at VITA sites used the money responsibly – to pay off debt, invest in education or housing, or open a bank account.
Last year, this program helped process more than 10,000 income tax returns for lower income households resulting in upwards of $5 million in Earned Income Tax Credits and $15 million in tax returns. A program such as VITA not only helps individuals and families in our community, but it also helps our local economy. Since 2004, VITA has returned approximately $230 million to our community.
Partners of the VITA Program include IRS, 211 Palm Beach/Treasure Coast, and the Palm Beach County Board of County Commissioners – The Department of Community Services.