Chesterton Tribune



Volunteer Income Tax Assistance info meeting Thursday, October 17 at United Way

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For the fourth year, United Way of Porter County will be hosting the United Way Regional Volunteer Centerís VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) program. A call has gone out again for volunteers to participate in the program for the upcoming tax season.

The VITA volunteer season will kick off with an informational meeting on Thursday, October 17, 2013 at 5 p.m. in the United Way of Porter County Community Room, 951 Eastport Centre Rd. (across and past Ivy Techís Valparaiso Campus). Anyone interested in finding out more about volunteering should plan to attend.

VITA offers free tax preparation, e-filing and financial education for low to moderate-income taxpayers living in Porter and LaPorte County. During the 2012/2013 tax season, VITA volunteers helped more than 300 people prepare and electronically file their taxes - both federal and state - saving them thousands of dollars in preparation costs.

The free VITA tax preparation service is available to taxpayers whose adjusted gross income is $51,000 or less (2012 limitation), the elderly and disabled. Tax preparation through VITA is offered from late January to mid-April. During the approximate 75-day tax preparation period, certified volunteers are asked to contribute any hours they can.

The United Way Regional Volunteer Center is asking fellow community members to make an impact during the upcoming tax season by becoming an IRS-Certified VITA Volunteer. No prior tax preparation experience is necessary.

Volunteer tax preparers learn valuable resume-building skills, receive free training and IRS certification, can choose their own hours to volunteer and serve other community members by giving back the knowledge they learn.

The certification requirements for the 2014 tax year have been streamlined by the IRS. Training courses have been reduced to two: Basic and Advanced. For new preparers, only the Basic course completion is necessary. Returning volunteers will be able to take only the Advanced program to be certified for most of the tax preparation requirements that fall within the scope of the entire VITA program.

All training and materials are free and will be accomplished both online and with in-person training at the United Way office in Valparaiso.

For more information and to register for the meeting, call George Kuebler at (219) 464-3583 x128 or visit

The VITA program is part of NWI A$$et Building Campaign -- a community based partnership organized in 2003 with the mission to link financial awareness and education, with tax preparation and asset building for low wage taxpayers in and around Lake and surrounding counties.



Posted 10/14/2013