Programs that Provide Tax Resolution Assistance
By: Elizabeth L., Published: Jan 11, 2020 | Related: Unclaimed Tax Refund
Many institutions offer free services that help members of the public in the United States resolve the difficult tax-filing process. The sheer complexity associated with filing a tax return can easily cause stress for a populace of taxpayers because, among other factors, many people among that demographic do not have an experienced grasp on today's tax legislation and rules. Furthermore, there are financial expenses that taxpayers may need to go through in order to even get all of their tax forms filed, and sometimes these taxpayers don't have enough money to handle those expenses comfortably.
Programs that provide tax resolution assistance are typically provided by offices run locally by the International Revenue Service, but they can also be provided by non-profit organizations and universities. If you need this assistance, you will need to formally prepare all relevant documentation concerning your taxes before scheduling an appointment with any of these programs, and you will also need to bring your identification and Social Security information.
The appointment itself will proceed based on what you write down on Form 13614-c, a document provided by the IRS that is designed to record and arrange all of your circumstantial, financial, and marital information that is relevant to your upcoming tax returns for your interviewer to review. The program can walk you through the process of filling it during the appointment itself, but it is recommended that you download the form from the IRS' website prior to the appointment and fill out what information you can on your own. This will make the meeting proceed more efficiently and help your interviewer prepare your return with minimal risk of error.
If you are a resident who had earned at most $54,000 throughout 2017, you will likely qualify for your community's Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program. The IRS provides financial grants that fund offices that provide tax assistance under the VITA brand, and you can locate these offices by referring to the website run by the Treasury Department itself. Volunteers who have been certified by the IRS can work at these offices to help their fellow residents arrange and file their returns either online or offline.
Elderly taxpayers have multiple options for tax assistance programs that they can turn to without having to pay for the service. The IRS supplies financial grants that partially fund two programs that operate similarly to each other: the Tax Counseling for the Elderly program and the AARP Foundation Tax-Aide program. While only persons aged 60 years or older can qualify for the former program, the latter program offers its services primarily for people who are at least 50 years old. The AARP program can also provide some forms of assistance for younger taxpayers if they earn at most a moderate level of income.
Persons who serve in the military also have a choice between a pair of free tax assistance programs that help with their tax returns. As they have uniquely structured tax obligations, taxpayers belonging to military families will likely need the specialized tax preparation help offered by the Armed Forces Tax Council, which is connected to the VITA program and is similarly staffed by volunteers who are familiar with how military personnel are taxed. If you serve in the military and want help filling out your return at an appointment, the AFTC provides assistance on-site. On the other hand, the tax preparation services company H&R Block runs a branch of its service called Military OneSource, which freely provides military taxpayers a tax preparation service that can help them assemble and file their own returns from their own households.
Many other potential issues that can arise with the complex process of filing one's taxes in general can be addressed by a large variety of available programs. While not all of them provide their services for free, a program that charges little for its service can be found fairly easily. For example, many non-profit organizations and educational institutes run tax clinics that help low-income taxpayers handle specific problems such as being audited by the IRS. Likewise, if you have accrued a large tax debt, a tax clinic can help you formulate and implement a payment schedule without charging you a high fee.