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About the Podcast
Tax-Aid is a non-profit that provides free income tax preparation services to taxpayers earning less than $53,000. This amazing organization provides a wonderful service to underserved individuals and communities. For the inspiring and professional tax preparer, the organization provides a resource to help others, and as we will learn on the Podcast, possibly help your career. More on the podcast and article.
Over 5,000 Returns Filed
Tax-Aid has organizational roots in tax preparation for lower income tax preparers and also offers a financial coaching program. I have always been impressed at the reach of this Bay Area organization which in 2015 alone filed over 5,023 returns, which resulted in a total of $5.1M in refunds. A total of 704 volunteers participated from beginner tax preparers, aspiring CPAs, and even partners of large accounting firms.
Tax preparation is complicated and the costly – even for basic returns. Often low income tax preparers file inaccurate returns or miss out on the Earned Income Tax Credit, which can be thought of as a massive tax reduction or even refund in excess of tax owed to those that qualify. Alternatives of low cost preparation which often sell high-cost loans can be especially costly to the low-income taxpayer. From my firsthand experience, seeing these types of returns filed can provide a valuable economic benefit and make taxpayers feel good about being timely.
An Amazing Training Opportunity
Tax-Aid will not only train you, but you will be surrounded by others in the field! What an amazing opportunity to help others, while at the same time helping yourself. Knowing others who help file returns can form an initial network of professionals to bounce ideas off of. Get contacts and deep relationships by performing this great service.
- Tax-Aid is a non-profit that provides free income tax preparation services to taxpayers earning less than $53,000. We want to make sure that families and individuals receive the refunds they earn and other credits such as the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC).
- This tax season, we had 29 tax sites throughout seven counties in the Bay Area; San Francisco, San Mateo, Marin, Santa Clara, Alameda, Contra Costa and Napa. Tax-Aid’s bilingual volunteers offer services to clients in Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Russian, and Tagalog.
- In 2015, Tax-Aid returned $5.1M in refunds to 5,023 clients with the help of 704 volunteers. The Average Gross Income (AGI) of Tax-Aid clients in the 2013 filing season was $19,778
- Since its first tax season in 1988, Tax-Aid has served a total of 58,721 clients and returned $57M in refunds.
- To find a tax site near you, please visit: tax-aid.org.
- Tax-Aid also has a financial coaching program where trained volunteer coaches are matched with clients to set and work towards a goal related to increasing savings, reducing debt or increasing a credit score. Coaches positively support their clients for six months to enhance their financial capability.
- When was organization founded? Organization started in 1988.
- How much do you charge for your services? Nothing! Our services are free.
- What is the EITC? The Earned Income Tax Credit has been helping low- to moderate-income workers by giving them a boost to their income. If you worked and earned under $53,000, you may be eligible for EITC. The EITC reduces your federal tax and could result in a refund. The EITC can boost the annual income of a low-wage worker by as much as 10%.
- Do volunteers need to be a tax expert or CPA to volunteer? No, we provide training. There is always an experienced tax preparer at our tax sites.
- Where do people get more information on tax preparation or volunteering? Visit tax-aid.org.
 United Way of the Bay Area 2010 Earn It! Keep It! Save It! Annual Report: The Economic Impact of Free Tax Preparation in the Bay Area. Retrieved March 28 2011 from http://www.earnitkeepitsaveit.org/images/pdf/eks_report_v11_web.pdf.
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