Free Tax Help

Updated December 2016   Fact Sheet PDF


Introduction

Tax help is provided by VITA and TCE volunteer assistors, who have received training that was developed and sponsored by the Internal Revenue Service. The volunteers will help you in the preparation of your Form 1040 with itemized deductions, as well as your Arkansas state income tax return. Legal Aid of Arkansas, Inc., maintains current lists of VITA and TCE sites.

 

VITA and TCE

The acronym VITA stands for Volunteer Income Tax Assistance. VITA volunteers provide free tax assistance with basic income tax returns at various community locations statewide to those who are unable to afford professional tax return preparation. VITA volunteers particularly assist those with lower incomes, older persons, people with disabilities, and non-English-speaking people.

 

The acronym TCE stands for Tax Counseling for the Elderly. AARP Tax-Aide is a charitable non-profit program administered by the AARP Foundation, which sponsors the Arkansas TCE sites. The purpose of AARP Tax-Aide is to provide free confidential tax return preparation service and answer tax questions for low to middle income tax payers with special attention to those 60 and older.

 

Both VITA and TCE volunteers have received the same tax training. TCE volunteers have received additional training in tax issues of interest to those ages 55 and over.

 

Filing Electronically

VITA and TCE sites offer free electronic filing of your tax return. Electronic filing provides faster and more accurate processing of your tax return. If you are due a refund, electronic filing can generally get it in your hands faster.

 

Returns Prepared by VITA or TCE

  • Form 1040 with Sch A, B, C-EZ, D, EIC, R, and SE
  • Form 1040ES (estimated tax)
  • Form 2441 Child and Dependent Care Credit
  • Form 8812 Additional Child Tax Credit
  • Form 8863 Education Credits
  • Form 8962 Premium Tax Credits

 

Bring These When Visiting VITA or TCE

  • a picture ID (or 2 other pieces of identification)
  • Social Security Card(s) for you, your spouse, and dependents
  • birthdates for all persons on the tax return
  • copies of all W-2’s, Form 1099’s, etc
  • a copy of a check for direct deposit (VITA needs the routing transit number and account number located at bottom left of check)
  • your spouse, if filing joint
  • a copy of your last year’s federal and state tax returns (if available)
  • Forms 1095 (relating to health insurance)

 

Site information is also available by calling the IRS toll-free at 1-800-906-9887 and at irs.gov.

 

This fact sheet is a collaboration of the Center for Arkansas Legal Services and Legal Aid of Arkansas, Inc. These nonprofit organizations provide free legal assistance to eligible Arkansans who meet income, asset, and other guidelines. Legal assistance may also include advice and counsel, brief services, or full representation depending on the situation. For more information about civil legal aid in Arkansas, please visit arlegalservices.org. For information specific to Legal Aid of Arkansas, Inc., visit arlegalaid.org. Apply for services online or by calling 1-800-9-LAW-AID (1-800-952-9243).
The information and statements of law in this fact sheet should not be considered legal advice. This fact sheet is provided as a broad guide to help you understand how certain legal matters are handled in general. Courts may interpret the law differently. Before you take action, talk to an attorney and follow his or her advice. Always do what the court tells you to do.
Content provided by: the Legal Aid of Arkansas, Inc., Low-Income Taxpayer Clinic

 

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