INDIANAPOLIS – With the April 18 tax filing deadline nearing, Marion County residents should take advantage of Indy’s Free Tax Preparation Program. Hundreds of volunteers are partnering with community members to provide free, convenient, on-site tax help at locations across the city. The service is available to qualifying individuals and families who earned $49,000 or less in 2010, senior citizens and disabled residents.
Indy’s Free Tax Preparation Program, part of Indy’s Campaign for Financial Fitness, aims to help 7,000 residents and their families file their tax returns for free this year, allowing them to keep 100 percent of their tax refunds. The IRS VITA-trained and certified volunteers file returns electronically. For taxpayers with a bank account, that means seeing 100 percent of their refund direct deposited in about 10 days.
“Indy’s Free Tax Preparation Program provides local taxpayers the opportunity to keep more of their hard-earned money by allowing an IRS-trained and certified VITA volunteer help file their taxes,” said Indianapolis First Lady Winnie Ballard, who is a certified volunteer tax preparer. Mrs. Ballard founded Indy’s Campaign for Financial Fitness in 2008 with the goal for all Marion County residents to achieve financial literacy. In addition to sites across the city, the Mobile Tax Team travels to apartment communities, workplaces and other convenient locations. The program already has helped thousands of Indianapolis residents this filing season.
“The ‘dream team’ did our taxes,” said Nikki Moore, a manager at the Constitution Gardens apartment community. “It was a magnificent team that came in and did the returns for our senior citizens: They were polite, patient and expedient. Our experience couldn’t have been better.”
Celadon Trucking is one of many local employers that offered employees this service through a visit this tax season from the Mobile Tax Team. “The preparers were very quick and competent with me and answered all the questions I had in great detail,” said Celadon Trucking employee Brittany Ball. “I would definitely use this service again.”
Sites offering free tax preparation include John H. Boner Center, Shepherd Community Center, Finance Center Federal Credit Union, Martin University, Oasis of Hope, Southeast Community Center, ELSA Weed and Seed, Hawthorne Community Center and Mary Rigg Neighborhood Center. Indianapolis residents may call 2-1-1 for nearby tax preparation locations, hours, and appointment information and to find out how if they qualify. For additional information about Indy’s Free Tax Preparation program, visit www.freetaxprepindy.com. For more information on Indy’s Campaign for Financial Fitness, please visit www.indyscampaign.org.