Serving Monroe, Owen, and Greene Counties

United Way Launches 2019 Free Community Tax Service

United Way is once again helping members of our community file their taxes for FREE and receive 100% of their refund quickly and easily – usually in just 10 days or less. The Free Community Tax Service, led by United Way of Monroe County and the Financial Stability Alliance for South Central Indiana along with community partners, is ready to help Hoosiers at 11 different tax sites in Monroe, Owen, and Brown counties file their taxes at no cost and claim valuable credits.  
 
Throughout the tax season, IRS-certified volunteers will help low- and moderate-income residents file their federal and Indiana tax returns for free, claim the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) if eligible, and receive their full refund quickly. The Free Community Tax Service is offering 11 full-service tax prep sites, including a new site at the Brown County Library and at the Northwest YMCA, one Spanish-language site, and an online filing option with MyFreeTaxes.com
 
An integral United Way financial stability program, “the Free Community Tax Service has real impact—we help people save money and get back some of their hard-earned income to pay bills, pay for education and certificates to increase their earnings, and kickstart their savings,” says Community Initiatives Director, Amy Leyenbeck. “When paired with other programs such as Bank on Bloomington, or our financial coaching services, the opportunity a tax refund presents can propel people along the path to sustained financial stability.” 
 
Free, Convenient Online Filing 
Area residents with a combined Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) of $66,000 or less may file state and federal returns at no charge from the convenience of their home, local library, or favorite coffee shop at www.MyFreeTaxes.com. Returns can even be saved in-progress and finished later! Unlike other online services claiming to be free, users will not experience pop-up ads that try to persuade them to pay for an upgraded version or be charged additional fees for special tax forms like Schedules C or F. MyFreeTaxes.com is really, truly free.  
 
The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) 
The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) can result in a significant income boost - up to $6,431 for those who qualify. The EITC is a refundable federal income tax credit for low- and moderate-income working individuals and families. A tax credit is a dollar-for-dollar reduction of taxes owed. Since it is a refundable credit, when the EITC exceeds the amount of taxes owed, it results in a tax refund to those who claim and qualify for the credit. 
 
Unfortunately, 1 out of 5 people who are eligible don’t claim their credit. Claiming the EITC is particularly important at a time when more workers may qualify due to reduced incomes. In order to claim the EITC, residents must file their tax returns, even if they are not required to file for another reason. Luckily, United Way’s tax aides are trained to ensure everyone who is eligible can access the EITC and any other potential credits. 
 
Bilingual tax preparation assistance available 
Once again, the Free Community Tax Service team is partnering with the City of Bloomington to host a full-service Spanish Language tax site. Certified bilingual volunteers will help Spanish speaking residents file their taxes for free every Saturday during tax season at City Hall.  For Spanish-language assistance booking appointments, individuals can call (812) 349-3860. 
 
The 2018 Community Impact 
In 2018, the Free Community Tax Service, MyFreeTaxes.com, and over 130 volunteers provided free tax filing for Monroe, Owen, and Greene county residents. More than 2,800 federal and state returns were filed, saving as much as $1,290,568 in tax preparation fees and bringing back more than $2.9 million in refunds and credits to our community. The Free Community Tax Service continues to expand each year to better serve area residents. Local residents reported last year they were using their savings to pay bills, purchase food and clothing, and get further on the road to financial stability by putting their refund in savings. 
 
Community Partners 
Along with United Way of Monroe County and the Financial Stability Alliance for South Central Indiana, partners of the Free Community Tax Service include 2-1-1, AARP, Area 10 Agency on Aging, Broadview Learning Center, Brown County Library, Chinese Business Association, City of Bloomington, El Centro Comunal Latino, Ellettsville Branch Library, Indiana Legal Services, Indiana University Maurer School of Law, Internal Revenue Service, Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington, Monroe County Public Library, Owen County Public Library, South Central Community Action Program, Stone Belt, the YMCA, and over 130 community volunteers. 
 
For more information 
To learn more about the Free Community Tax Service, free tax preparation sites dates and times, a tax preparation checklist, the EITC, and to see if they qualify, residents can call 2-1-1 or visit www.MonroeUnitedWay.org/FreeTaxes.   
 

Do you want to strengthen earnings in our community?

Please consider donating to the United Way Earnings Priority Fund. This fund helps hard working individuals and families get ahead by increasing their job skills and income potential, providing financial education, and building economic stability and independence.

Want to learn more about the other building blocks for a good life? Visit Education and Essentials to see how we are making an impact.

 
Related: 
  • Born Learning
  • Financial Stability Alliance
  • Monroe Smart Start
  • Familywize Discount Prescription Card
  • Bank On Bloomington