Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA)

IMPORTANT UPDATE

We will begin to schedule tax appointments on January 11, 2021. To schedule you can call 2-1-1 or use the link below.

United Way of Summit & Medina's highest priority is the health and safety of our community. To protect the wellbeing of our volunteers, our staff and the public. We will offer a variety of appointment types that allow for limited contact and social distancing. Below is a description of some of the potential delivery methods. Check back here in January to the learn about the appointment options we will have available.


Our volunteer tax preparers will prepare your Federal, State, and City of Akron tax returns at no cost. The Financial Empowerment Center also offers other services that can help you reach your financial goals including one-on-one financial coaching. Learn more about the Financial Empowerment Center >

TAX PREPARATIONS OPTIONS

VIRTUAL VITA

Gather your tax documents and take pictures of them or upload them to your device (smartphone or computer) so they are available electronically. We then complete an intake appointment via phone where we will have you securely upload your tax documents and verbally complete an intake sheet. Your taxes will then be prepared by one of our certified tax preparers. You will schedule an appointment to review your completed tax return one week later. During this appointment we will request your approval to e-file your federal and state return

Note: This process may change as we explore different technology options to improve the process.

To schedule your appointment for Virtual VITA, click the button below or call 2-1-1.

SCHEDULE YOUR TAX APPOINTMENT

DRIVE THROUGH VITA

Upon your arrival at the Financial Empowerment Center, you will be greeted and provided an intake sheet. We will then collect all needed tax documents. Wait in your vehicle or run an errand as our staff and volunteers complete your taxes. The tax preparation process typically takes 45-60 minutes. Once the return is completed, we will review your completed return with you in your car. Upon your approval, we will e-file your federal and state returns.

To schedule your appointment for Drive Through VITA, click the button below or call 2-1-1.

SCHEDULE YOUR TAX APPOINTMENT

MY FREE TAXES

If you would like to self-file your tax return online, you can visit www.myfreetaxes.com, a free software sponsored by United Way Worldwide and H&R block. Through My Free Taxes, you can file a FREE simple federal and state return. Be cautious of adding fees by opting into services such as a "CPA sign off" which include a cost.  The IRS also has a variety of free-file software available at https://apps.irs.gov/app/freeFile/

*The following items are unable to be completed using the My Free Taxes free software:

  • Schedule A  Itemized deductions
  • Schedule C – Business income (including Uber, Lyft and any other 1099-misc income)
  • Schedule D  Sale of stocks and bonds
  • Schedule E  Used to report income/loss from rental properties, royalties, estates and trusts

If you have tax law questions as you are completing your tax return, you can email [email protected] and we will respond with one business day.


WHAT YOU NEED FOR YOUR TAX APPOINTMENT

  • Social Security card for you, your spouse and any dependents
  • Photo ID for yourself and your spouse, if filing jointly
  • Income and expense documentation (W-2, 1099, Social Security Benefit Statement, etc) for the previous year
  • Copies of the previous year’s federal and state tax returns, if available
  • Bank routing and account numbers for direct deposit (a voided check is acceptable)

Your spouse must be present to sign required forms if filing jointly.


OUT OF SCOPE TAX RETURNS

Our tax preparers are certified to prepare a variety of tax returns, including Schedule Cs, itemized returns, and Schedule Ds. However, due to IRS regulations for VITA sites, we are unable to prepare tax returns with the following characteristics. For additional information, contact the Financial Empowerment Center at 330.685.9430.

  • Rental property income or expenses
  • Minister tax returns with parsonage/housing allowance
  • Taxpayers with dual citizenship
  • Schedule C with:
    • Business use of home
    • Net losses
    • Expenses for employees or contract labor
    • Cost of goods sold (inventory)

ABOUT THE EARNED INCOME TAX CREDIT (EITC)

The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is a refundable tax credit for low to moderate income working individuals and couples, particularly those with children. Through its VITA program, United Way is working to help all Summit and Medina county families receive what they are due. In addition to being a financial boost for working people, the EITC boosts the local economy. Research has shown that the EITC encourages work, reduces poverty and leads to long-term gains in child health and academic success.