Register now

State Employees' Credit Union (SECU) said it will partner with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the National Credit Union Foundation to promote the availability of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) free tax preparation program. Approximately 694,000 North Carolina taxpayers received $1.3 billion in EITC refunds averaging $1,820 this past year. The EITC is a tax credit for certain people who work and have earned income under $34,692. A tax credit reduces the amount of taxes owed and may also allow a refund even if no taxes were withheld.

The National Credit Union Foundation (NCUF) also has created a partnership with the IRS to provide VITA programs and EITC assistance through the national credit union system. In the future, credit unions such as SECU can establish on-premise Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites that will provide: Assistance with money management skills to low-income persons; low-income assistance to meet tax obligations; positive relations between credit unions, its members, and the community; and funding sources, such as tax credit assistance, for asset building strategies.

The NCUF said it will provide support for VITA in selected cities based on available credit union resources, NCUF funding initiatives, EITC demographic information, and community based partnership activity. VITA sites provide free basic income tax return preparation to individuals with low to moderate income. In addition to free tax return preparation assistance, many sites also offer free electronic filing.

For reprint and licensing requests for this article, click here.