Working with United Way to administer the area's Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program is rewarding while serving a vital role in our local community. The VITA Program offers free tax to help households with of an annual income of $54,000 or lower, senior citizens, persons with disabilities and with limited English proficiency and others who need assistance in preparing their own tax returns. As a VITA volunteer, you are IRS-certified to prepare individuals' tax returns. Volunteers are needed at our sites during the tax filing season.
Don’t know that much about taxes? Don’t worry — you’ll get specialized training or you can choose a volunteer role that doesn’t require a certification. The hours are flexible, the training is free and the time commitment is completely up to you.
Here are some of the volunteer roles needed at our free tax preparation sites:
- Greeter/Screener – Greet everyone visiting the site to create a pleasant atmosphere. Screen taxpayers to determine the type of assistance they need and confirm they have the necessary documents to complete their tax returns. Certification is not required for this position.
- Interpreter – Provide free language interpreter services to customers who are not fluent in English. Basic tax knowledge is helpful, but it is not required for this position.
- Tax Preparer – Complete and become certify in tax training, including the use of electronic filing software, to provide free tax return preparation for eligible taxpayers.
- Quality Reviewer – Review tax returns completed by volunteer tax preparers, ensuring that every taxpayer receives top quality service and that the tax returns are error-free. Certification at least at the intermediate level is required.
- Computer Specialist or troubleshooter – Have a working knowledge of personal computers, software and communications systems. Certification is not required for this position. If working at a self-prepare site, become familiar with the various tax software option(s) available at the site. Although you may have less taxpayer interaction than most volunteers, patience with those individuals who may not be computer savvy is highly desired.
- Tax Coach – Provide tax preparation assistance and guide taxpayers in preparing their own tax returns. Certification is required for this volunteer role and training is available on-line or through face-to-face instruction.
For more information on how to become VITA volunteer, please contact Lisa Frick, 276.403.5965.