Tax-Aide Program Offers Free Help
AARP program provides free tax assistance; appointments a required
AARP Foundation Tax-Aide – which provides free tax-preparation assistance with an emphasis on helping taxpayers who are over 50 or have low to moderate incomes – is offering low-contact and virtual services for taxpayers concerned about the spread of COVID-19. Appointments are required for all services. Tax-Aide is the nation’s largest free, volunteer-based tax assistance and preparation program has helped over 68 million taxpayers since 1968. It is offered in conjunction with the IRS, and AARP membership is not required.
“For more than 50 years, Tax-Aide has helped low-income Americans file their taxes, and in that time, we’ve seen how even modest refunds can be a lifeline for older adults struggling to make ends meet,” said Lynnette Lee-Villanueva, Vice President of AARP Foundation Tax-Aide. “This tax season, AARP Foundation Tax-Aide has adapted by providing new services to help people avoid missing out on the tax credits and deductions they’ve earned, while staying safe during the pandemic. The health and safety of program volunteers and taxpayers remains AARP Foundation’s top priority.”
In the Chippewa Valley, Tax-Aide services are offered through the Chippewa Falls Senior Center, 1000 E. Grand Ave. Assistance is by appointment only, and taxpayers are asked to call 651-300-2431 (not the senior center) for instructions.
Tax-Aide is offering several options this year, and access to these services depend on volunteer availability and COVID restrictions in each locality. This year, tax assistance is available by appointment only to help protect Tax-Aide clients and volunteers.
- Self-preparation: Tax-Aide provides consumers with access to software to prepare their own taxes, and if needed, a Tax-Aide IRS-certified counselor can coach them through the process by phone or through computer screen-sharing. This service is free for qualifying clients with an Adjusted Gross Income of less than $72,000 a year. For additional qualification details visit taxaide.aarpfoundation.org/online-self-filing-software or click here to contact a Tax-Aide volunteer to discuss your situation and see what services are available to you.
- In-Person: In Tax-Aide’s traditional in-person service, taxes are prepared and filed by IRS-certified tax counselors – with strict physical distancing measures in place. The number of locations is limited this season, and public health precautions may delay openings or limit the number of appointments available.
- Low-Contact: Taxpayers interact with IRS-certified Tax-Aide volunteers in one or two short, in-person meetings to exchange documents.
- Contact-Free: Taxpayers interact with Tax-Aide’s IRS-certified tax counselors online or by phone and exchange documents electronically and securely.
Tax-Aide volunteers provide taxpayers in communities nationwide with free tax preparation and filing services. Volunteers are trained and IRS-certified every year to ensure they understand the latest changes to the U.S. Tax Code.