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Give Back to your Community by Becoming a Free Tax Preparation Volunteer
November 29, 2022
State Treasurer Rachael Eubanks today announced an opportunity for Michiganders to serve their communities through the 2023 Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program.
"VITA is an excellent opportunity to help hardworking Michiganders receive the federal and state tax benefits they are entitled to receive," State Treasurer Rachael Eubanks said. "We need more volunteers to be stationed at sites statewide, so we can connect even more taxpayers with these critical VITA services. This program is a great example of neighbors helping neighbors and giving back to the community."
VITA volunteers are community members trained to help their neighbors file their taxes for free and claim every tax credit available to them. Their service supports workers in caring for their families, withstanding unexpected economic changes, and bolstering their overall financial well-being.
VITA programs save Michiganders approximately $19.5 million annually in tax preparation fees alone and place $64 million in the pockets of Michiganders.
Free tax preparation services are available to people who generally make $60,000 or less, persons with disabilities, the elderly, and limited English-speaking taxpayers who need assistance in preparing their own tax returns.
"This year, there are more opportunities than ever to volunteer with VITA," said Brian Rakovitis, Director of Economic Inclusion at the Community Economic Development Association of Michigan (CEDAM). "No tax experience is needed, the training for IRS certification is free, and the hours are flexible."
Because no tax experience is required, volunteers assisting with the VITA Program come from all walks of life: working professionals, retirees, college and high school students, IRS employees, and people who just want to contribute to their community.
VITA volunteers are assigned to work with a sponsoring organization – first to receive training and then to begin volunteering at a convenient location. Training is offered both online and in the classroom. Tax sites are generally open nights and weekends, and the hours are flexible, allowing volunteers to choose time slots that fit their schedules. Individuals can sign up now through the IRS.
"It's really been a wonderful experience," says Jim H., a volunteer tax preparer for the Heart of West Michigan United Way. "At the end of the day, I get to go home knowing I was able to help some of my friends and neighbors in our small town."
Taxpayer Assistance Information
Ron Leix, Treasury, 517-335-2167