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Earned Income Tax Credit – Do You Qualify?

From Scott Badesch, Chief Executive Officer

It is not often that Internal Revenue Services gives money away! But, they do.

And you might be qualified to receive this money this year! And this is not a gimmick!!!

Each year, the Internal Revenue Services has a program called VITA (Volunteer Tax Assistance Program). Last year, the volunteers of the VITA program, helped over 24 million people receive close to $50 Billion in Earned Income Tax Credit. The average amount of tax money given to these individuals was approximately $2,000/family. The VITA volunteers also can help you prepare your taxes free of charge if you are income eligible as defined below. If your income for last year was below the amount identified below, there is no need to pay someone to do your taxes. Go to a VITA Tax Counselor.

To be eligible for free income tax preparation an Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) this year, your adjusted gross income and earned income must be normally be less than $43,279 if you are a single parent and have three dependents ($48,279 if you are filing jointly with a spouse), $40,295 if you are a single parent and have two dependents ($45,295 if you are filing jointly with a spouse), and $35,463 if you are filing with one dependent ($40,463 if you are filing jointly with a spouse), and $13,400 if you are filing a single person with no children (or $18,400 if you are filing with a souse).

The Earned Income Tax works like this. If you are qualified, the amount you receive is defined a tax credit. The VITA volunteers also can help you prepare your taxes and will determine, based on the IRS guidelines and rules, what you owe in taxes. Let’s say they determine you owe $4,000 and you have already had $5,000 taken out of your paycheck. That means you would get a $1,000 refund from the IRS. But, if you also qualified for an Earned Income Tax Credit of $2,000, you would get a check from the IRS of $3,000. Of course, your Earned Income Tax Credit may be more or less than $2,000.

There are additional requirements required to receive an Earned Income Tax Credit, but if your income for 2009 is less than the category describing your filing status, I would encourage you to seek out a VITA tax counselor. Throughout North Carolina, you can dial 2-1-1 and you will be hooked up with a confidential information and referral specialist paid for by the state of North Carolina and United Ways of North Carolina.

In today’s difficult economic times, this benefit from government is one way many people can get some extra money when most don’t even know this government program exists. Also, even though many people need access to their refund very quickly, getting a tax refund loan is often times very costly and not needed. Many VITA sites help you file electronically and you often times can your full refund in around 10 days. When you go to a Refund Loan company, you not only have to pay interest on the loan, you also have to usually pay a fee that is very costly given that you can get an electronic refund often in around ten days.

Scott Badesch

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