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The IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program offers free tax help & Covered CA Subsidy compliance to individuals who generally make $54,000 or less, persons with disabilities, the elderly and individuals with limited English proficiency who need assistance in preparing their taxes.
The Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) program offers free tax help for all taxpayers, particularly those who are 60 and older. The IRS certified VITA and TCE volunteers are trained to help with many tax questions, including credits such
Warning we just got from Covered CA
Per law and regulation, agents cannot initiate conversations regarding whether or not the consumer is a non-tax filer. Do not provide any tax filing advice under any circumstance or answer any tax filing questions – refer them to the consumer service center at 1-800-300-1506 with the Primary Tax Filer (or their Authorized Representative) on the line. Review the Tax Preparation Help for Consumers Handout that includes details about where consumers can find a licensed or registered tax preparer or low-cost tax preparation services. 9.14.2018 Agent Bulletin *
Check out where administrative law judge said he wished he could make Covered CA pay the costs of their bogus advise but didn’t have that authority Polk Case.
More on VITA
The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is a significant tax credit for workers who earned $53,505 or less in 2016. The VITA and TCE programs can help answer many EITC questions and help taxpayers claim the credit if they qualify. Taxpayers may also use the IRS.gov EITC Assistant to help them determine their eligibility.
Before visiting a VITA or TCE site, taxpayers should review Publication 3676-B to be aware of the services provided. To find the nearest VITA or TCE site, taxpayers can use the VITA and TCE locator tool available on IRS.gov, download the IRS mobile app IRS2GO or call 800-906-9887.
For assistance preparing a tax return at a VITA or TCE site, taxpayers must bring all required documents and information including:
- Proof of identification (photo ID) for taxpayer and spouse
- Social Security cards for the taxpayer, spouse and dependents
- An Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) assignment letter may be substituted for those who do not have a Social Security number
- Proof of foreign status, if applying for an ITIN
- Birth dates for the taxpayer, spouse and dependents
- Wage and earning statements (Form W-2, W-2G, 1099-R,1099-Misc) from all employers and other payers
- Interest and dividend statements from banks (Forms 1099)
- Health Insurance Exemption Certificate, if received
- A copy of last year’s federal and state returns, if available
- Proof of bank account routing and account numbers for direct deposit such as a blank check
- To file taxes electronically on a married-filing-joint tax return, both spouses must be present to sign the required forms
- Total amount paid for daycare services and the daycare provider’s tax identifying number such as their Social Security number or business Employer Identification Number
- Forms 1095-A, B and C, Health Coverage Statements
- Copies of income transcripts from IRS and state, if applicable
In addition, the military and the IRS join together to provide free tax assistance to military personnel and their families. The Armed Forces Tax Council (AFTC) consists of the tax program coordinators for the Army, Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard.
Taxpayers that prefer to file their tax returns electronically have the option of using IRS Free File. IRS Free File offers brand-name tax software to taxpayers who earned $64,000 or less in 2016 to file their returns free. IRS.gov/freefile.
Resources & Links
California Tax Education Council: http://knowyourtaxpreparer.org/
Find trained, licensed and registered tax professionals
Board of Equalization: www.boe.ca.gov
Tax e-filing for businesses
CA Board of Accountancy: http://www.dca.ca.gov/cba/consumers/select-acpa.shtml
How to Select a CPA
Franchise Tax Board: https://www.ftb.ca.gov/
E-File a tax return, form instructions, pay taxes, find free tax help
Turbo Tax: https://turbotax.intuit.com/best-tax-software/affordable-care-act/
Subsidy calculator, penalty calculator, informational videos
H&R Block- https://www.hrblock.com/aca-tax-impact/
Informational webpage, penalty calculator
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Free help to file taxes VITA
Volunteer Income Tax Assistance
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