Volunteer Income Tax Assistance

For many in our community, taxes can feel like a burden. VITA volunteers work to help lift that burden by offering low-income families free tax preparation.

Tax refunds give these families a springboard for the future by putting their hard-earned money back into their hands. It's a simple way to offer a sense of hope.

Appointments may be scheduled starting January 2019.

 


We Need Volunteers Like You!

Join us for one of our 2018 Info Sessions

Lancaster

United Way of Lancaster County, Blair Room
630 Janet Avenue, Lancaster, PA 17601

(Park in Frances Avenue Lot — Lot 3 and use Entrance D)

  • Monday, September 17
    5:30 - 6:30 pm
  • Tuesday, September 25
    10 - 11 am
  • Monday, October 1
    5:30 - 6:30 pm
  • Wednesday, October 10
    10 - 11 am
  • Wednesday, October 17
    5:30 - 6:30 pm
  • Thursday, October 25
    5:30 - 6:30 pm

Ephrata

Ephrata Library Exploratorium
560 South Reading Road, Ephrata, PA 17522

(The building next to the library)

  • Tuesday, September 25
    5:30 - 6:30 pm
  • Monday, October 22
    5:30 - 6:30 pm

 


Two Ways to File for Free

Option 1: Schedule An Appointment

Call 2-1-1 or 717.291.5462 to speak with one of United Way's trained information and referral specialists who can help you determine if you qualify for the VITA free tax preparation service, and who can help you schedule an appointment at one of our 15 VITA sites in Lancaster County.

Appointments may be scheduled starting January 2019.

 

Option 2: File Online for Free

Online self-preparation through MyFreeTaxes.com submits your federal and state tax forms if you made $62,000 or less. You will need to fill out and submit your local tax forms separately and can obtain a printed form by calling 717.569.4521 or file online at http://lctcb.localtaxonline.org/.

File online for FREE with MyFreeTaxes.com


How does VITA help you?

VITA helps put hard-earned money back in the pockets of low-to-moderate income wage earners in the form of tax refunds and tax credits. And the free service saves taxpayers the expense of tax preparation services, which average about $273. Last year we saved taxpayers more than $2.3 million in fees.

Who Is Eligible?

Any household that made $62,000 or less in 2017 is eligible to file your taxes for free in person or at MyFreeTaxes.com. You qualify to have your income taxes prepared free of charge at our VITA locations in Lancaster County if in 2017:

  • Your total household income was $62,000 or less

  • You did not receive clergy pay

  • You did not have income from the ownership of a farm

  • You did not have rental property income

  • You did not have income from Puerto Rico

 


What to bring to your VITA appointment

To prepare your tax returns, we need you to have the proper documents. For the list of what documents and information you should bring with you to your appointment, click here.

At Your Appointment:

  • We'll file ALL your federal, state, and local forms for FREE.

  • Our VITA volunteers are IRS trained and certified to ensure you get the refunds and tax credits you are entitled to.

  • There are 17 convenient locations throughout Lancaster County.

  • VITA volunteers can maximize your EITC if you qualify.

 


2017 Community Impact

So how’d we do? Just look at our results from 2017!

  • United Way enlisted the caring support of 212 volunteers and helped each become certified tax preparers

  • We hosted 17 free tax preparation sites around Lancaster County

  • Our volunteers prepared and filed 8,720 returns

  • Low- to moderate-income taxpayers received more than $11.4 million in tax refunds

  • In addition, they saved more than $2.3 million on tax preparation services

Learn more about the success of VITA last year: click here.

Lancaster County's VITA program started off with outreach efforts from our Women's Council whose members learned that each year, millions of dollars of tax refunds went unclaimed because taxpayers didn't know they were eligible for, or didn't claim, valuable tax credits for working families. Recognizing that income is an important building block for a better life, the Women's Council began outreach efforts to educate families about the opportunities available.

 


Thank You To:

Fulton Bank

Ephrata National BankPNC Bank

Contact Jaclyn Belew, VITA Manager, to learn more about volunteering: 
717-824-8146 or Belew@uwlanc.org.