VITA: Free Tax Preparation
**Due to the impact of COVID-19 we are currently evaluating 2021 options for our VITA sites. Please utilize MyFreeTaxes in the interim and check back to this page for 2021 details as they become available. **
The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) is a program offered by United Way of Lake and Sumter Counties (UWLS) that provides FREE tax preparation, and filing services, to individuals and households. VITA Tax Prep is available to anyone regardless of age.
VITA Volunteers are local residents who receive tax preparation training by UWLS and are certified by the Internal Revenue Service.
Every year, struggling families have the stressful task of finding additional funds to have their taxes prepared and file the required tax return. Tax preparation can cost $200 on average. For families that live pay check to pay check, this could be the difference between paying the rent on time or purchasing groceries. Thanks to organizations like the United Way of Lake and Sumter Counties, that provide VITA programs in our community, families do not need to make those kinds of tough choices.
VITA stands for Volunteer Income Tax Assistance. It is one of the many programs United Way offers to the communities we serve. It falls under our Income pillar, and is one of our financial stability programs. At our United Way, we believe that every individual can achieve financial independence. The VITA program provides free basic tax preparation to individuals and families who earn under $66,000.00. Yet, in addition to saving on tax preparation cost, eligible participants also are assured to receive the Earned Income Tax Credit, as well as other tax credits available at the time of preparation. Taxes are filed electronically for quick refunds and bring money back into our community and the families in our community.
Tax returns are prepared by certified volunteer tax preparers. Volunteers earn a tax-preparer certification that can be used to enhance their resume, but also earn experience, confidence and other valuable lifelong skills. These learned skills can help volunteers not only provide a hand up to fellow community members, but also to advance in their careers while making a difference.
If you are in need of tax preparation, simply call the United Way’s referral hotline 2‑1‑1, which is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Operators will find a location most convenient to you and will schedule you an appointment.
If you would like to learn a new skill, help others, and make a difference in the community by becoming a Certified Tax Preparer for the VITA program, call Tracey Schoonmaker at 352-787-7530. It is never too early or too late to Live United! Call today and make a difference not only in your life, but in the the lives of others.
How Do I Find Out More?
Taxpayers who have questions about United Way of Lake and Sumter Counties VITA Program can call 352-787-7530 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
To make a tax preparation appointment, please dial 2-1-1 and an operator will assist you.
Anyone who would like to serve as a VITA volunteer, please contact , Tracey Schoonmaker, at 352-787-7530 or email email@example.com.
Schedule an Appointment
We anticipate being able to provide access to our Self-Scheduling tool to make appointments for 2021.
Visit www.myfreetaxes.com and take advantage of the FREE service!