VITA

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VITA needs you!

The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program is now accepting applications for interested individuals to assist in free tax preparation and filing for individuals in Racine County. For the 2022 tax season, we will be planning both virtual and in-person volunteer opportunities. No experience is necessary, and we provide free training to ensure your time with us will be fun and successful. If you are interested in learning how to prepare taxes and using that skill to give back to your community, click below for more information and to fill out an application. See our volunteers in action! Visit the VITA volunteer impact photo gallery and watch the VITA impact tour on Youtube.

A red button that reads "volunteer"

 

Let VITA help you file your taxes for free. A logo for VITA

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) is a national program staffed by local volunteers to provide free preparation and electronic filing of tax returns. It’s an important service to thousands of individuals and families in Racine County with low-to-moderate incomes who are eligible for tax credits.

Services are closed at this time. Please check back in January 2022.

FAQs and Taxpayer Resources

Check back with us in January 2022. We will update the website to include information on making an appointment, utilizing our 100% virtual GetYourRefund platform and how to access our free TaxSlayer software.

Our VITA travel team is here to make VITA services even more accessible to your clients. Racine County organizations are invited to schedule a Tuesday during tax season that works best for their clients and/or staff. You will then be contacted by Lori Riffer, Initiatives Manager, to determine the time and type of service delivery that would work best for you and your space. We offer Facilitated Self Assistance where clients do their own return using our free software while having the support of certified volunteers to answer questions and guide them through the process, drop-off which allows us to collect documents and do intake interviews onp-site in order for our volunteers to prepare off-site and return finished tax returns to the client on a later date, or traditional on-site tax preparation. can assist clients at your location.  Submit a VITA resource request for more information. Click HERE to fill out the form. 

During the 2022 tax season, VITA will offer a variety of tax service options including in-person, virtual and valet/drop-off. We will update the website in January 2022 to include a menu of options. 

Yes. We would be happy to help you file for Homestead. Click on the blue "file now" button above to get the process started. When asked to upload documents/photos in GetYourRefund, you will need to take a photo of your completed rent certificate or 2020 property tax statement as well as any other documents requested. 

Blank Wisconsin rent certificates can be found HERE. Your landlord will need to complete their portion of the form; including signature and date.

Instructions for the Wisconsin Homestead Credit can be found HERE if you decide to complete the form on your own.

Please submit your question(s) to our IRS-certified VITA volunteers via email at taxhelp@unitedwayracine.org. Please do not send or attach any personally identifiable information such as tax documents, social security number etc. via email.

Have these documents available:

  • ​​​​​​​Current photo identification (driver’s license, state ID or student ID).
  • Social security cards or ITINs for you, your spouse (if married) and any dependents you are claiming.
  • If filing joint, both taxpayers must be present. Returns cannot be completed until signed by both taxpayers.
  • Documentation to show receipt of stimulus payments.
  • All wage and tax statements, including the following forms:
    • W-2 (employment)
    • W-2 G (gambling winnings)
    • 1099-R (retirement)
    • 1099-G (unemployment)
    • SSA-1099 (social security)
    • 1099-INT (interest)
    • 1099-DIV (dividends)
    • 1098-T (tuition)
  • 1095-A if you receive health insurance through the marketplace.
  • Any other tax document(s) you’ve received.
  • If you paid for childcare, provide a statement from your provider.
  • Bank information for direct deposit (routing and account number).

Homestead credit is available to Wisconsin residents with an income under $24,680. If filing for Homestead, you will also need:

  • Your property tax bill or completed rent certificate.
  • Social security benefits, including:
    • federal and state SSI
    • SSI-E
    • SSD
    • caretaker supplement payments
  • Wisconsin Works payment documents.
  • Child support amount received from the year you are filing.

The IRS has officially posted the following information regarding returns previously filed and accepted with Unemployment.

If you have already filed your 2020 Form 1040 or 1040-SR, there is no need to file an amended return (Form 1040-X) to figure the amount of unemployment compensation to exclude. The IRS will refigure your taxes using the excluded unemployment compensation amount and adjust your account accordingly. The IRS will send any refund amount directly to you.

If you still need to file, our VITA software is updated and we are able to help you with your return. If you are using the FSA software to prepare the return on your own, please make sure that your unemployment income is calculated to subtract up to $10,200 on your federal return. This subtraction is not for your WI return, only the Federal return.

In order to use our virtual VITA services you will need to have access to texting or an email address. Here's a video with instructions on how to set up a free Gmail account.

To check on the status of your federal refund:

Have your tax return handy so you can provide your social security number (SSN) or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN), filing status and the exact, whole dollar amount of your refund.

OnlineIRS.gov

Phone: 1 (800) 829-1040

To check on the status of your state refund:

Please have ready your Social Security number (SSN) or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) used to file, the exact amount of the refund, and the tax year of the refund.

Online: WI.gov

Phone:  1 (866) 947-7363

Email: Visit WI.gov for their email form.​​​​​​​

Mailing addresses can be found at the following links:

Wisconsin Department of Revenue: DOR Tax Return Mailing Addresses (wi.gov)

Federal: WISCONSIN - Where to File Addresses for Taxpayers and Tax Professionals (irs.gov)

Please connect with the Racine Financial Empowerment Center (FEC) on their website or by calling (262) 200-0831. Through free, one-on-one, professional financial counseling, the Racine FEC can help you take control of your debt, deal with debt collectors, improve your credit, create a budget, save, connect to safe and affordable financial products and much more. Services are available to all City of Racine residents regardless of income.

What is the EITC?

The earned income tax credit (EITC) is a refundable tax credit for both federal and Wisconsin tax returns. You may qualify for the EITC if you worked last year but earned a low or moderate income. The EITC is a refundable tax credit, which means that even if you don't owe any tax, you can still receive a refund.

Do I qualify for the EITC?

To qualify for the credit, your adjusted gross income (AGI) must be below a certain amount, and you must:

  • Have a social security number (SSN) valid for employment by the due date of your return (including extensions). (If you're filing a joint return, your spouse also must have an SSN valid for employment.) If you don't have an SSN by the due date of your return (including extensions), you can't claim the EIC on either an original or an amended return, even if you later get an SSN.
    • Any qualifying child listed on Schedule EIC (Form 1040) also must have an SSN valid for employment by the due date of your return (including extensions). If a child didn't have an SSN by the due date of your return (including extensions), you can't count that child as a qualifying child in figuring the EIC on either your original or an amended return, even if that child later gets an SSN.
  • Have a filing status other than married filing separately.
  • Be a U.S. citizen or resident alien all year, or a nonresident alien married to a U.S. citizen or resident alien and filing a joint return.
  • Not file Form 2555 (related to foreign earned income).
  • Not have investment income over $3,650.
  • Have earned income from employment or from self-employment.
  • Not be a qualifying child of another person. (If you're filing a joint return, your spouse also can't be a qualifying child of another person.)
  • Have a qualifying child who meets the age, relationship, residency and joint return tests and isn't treated as the qualifying child of another person. Or, if you don't have a qualifying child, you must:
    • Be age 25 but under 65 at the end of the year.
    • Not qualify as a dependent of another person.
    • Live in the United States for more than half of the year.

If you qualify for the credit, the amount of your EITC will depend on your filing status, whether you have a qualifying child (and if so, how many) and the amount of your wages and income last year. Qualifying children must be listed on Schedule EIC (Form 1040) PDF.

​​​​​​​To see if you qualify and for how much, see the EITC qualification assistant. ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

For more information, see Publication 596, Earned Income Credit and visit Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC)​​​​​​​

Did you receive a letter from the IRS about the EITC? 

Find out what to do.

What other credits could I qualify for?

If you qualify for the EITC, you may also qualify for other tax credits.

Check the status of your stimulus payment and get the most up-to-date information at IRS.gov.

Yes! You can still go to MyFreeTaxes.com to file your own taxes for free. The program has switched over to use TaxSlayer software which is the same as our DIY option above. There is no income limit and no form limit for MyFreeTaxes.

Para traducir la información de esta página, abra el sitio web y haga clic con el botón derecho en el sitio web. A continuación, le dará la oportunidad de traducir al inglés. Puede hacer clic en el traducir el icono a la derecha de la barra del navegador para seleccionar el idioma al que desea que se traduzca la página (por ejemplo, español). Una vez que haga clic en el botón azul "FILE NOW" arriba, GetYourRefund.org está disponible en español.

Sí. GetYourRefund está disponible en inglés y español. El programa VITA tiene preparadores de impuestos bilingues disponibles para ayudar a los clientes con la preparación y presentación.