The timing couldn’t be better for this cause-related effort from Wal-Mart, United Way and One Economy Corporation to help low- to moderate-income families and individuals prepare their taxes and get any refunds they are due.
The Wal-Mart Foundation is giving a $3.6 million grant to launch a free tax filing tour that will see five Mobile Tax Center vans visiting communities around the country. The grant will also fund United Way-supported Volunteer Income Tax Assistance campaigns around the country where anyone earning less than $42,000 per year can file their taxes for free.
One Economy has created an online tax filing platform designed to make it easier for low-income Americans to get the tax credits and refunds they deserve. With the grant money from the Wal-Mart foundation, One Economy will be able to take those digital tools directly into the neighborhoods where they are needed.
Mobile Tax Center vans equipped with One Economy’s online tax filing technology and IRS-certified tax professionals will be set-up in Wal-Mart parking lots or at the offices of One Economy’s community partners during February, March and April. Individuals earning less than $56,000 per year will be able to visit the vans and file their taxes free of charge. Visit http://www.myfreetaxes.com for van locations.
In addition, IRS-certified tax professionals at more than 90 VITA campaigns across the U.S. will be on hand to educate consumers about tax credits for which they may be eligible.
The IRS estimates that approximately 20% of eligible individuals and families are unaware that they qualify for the Earned Income Tax Credit, a refundable federal income tax credit for low-to moderate-income individuals and families.