Volunteer Income Tax Assistance IRS Program (VITA)
About Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) and Earn it! Keep it! Save it!
The Internal Revenue Service estimates that 15-25% of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), goes unclaimed by low-income workers every year. This is equivalent to millions of dollars that America’s lowest wage earners are forgoing. Unfortunately, many of the eligible low-income families in our communities do not know that the tax credit exists or are using paid tax preparers to claim the credit. About 67% of EITC recipients use paid preparers, which decreases the amount of net credit that they receive.
The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance is an IRS program, a service provided by EBALDC, and is committed to increasing the number of low-income families and individuals who claim EITC and receive their income tax refunds. Through our culturally and linguistically competent staff and volunteers, we have made significant strides. As part of the United Way of the Bay Area's Earn It! Keep It! Save It! Campaign, EBALDC operates one of only a few VITA sites in Oakland Chinatown where low to moderate income households are offered free income tax preparation services, asset development materials, and pre-screening for public benefits. Families and individuals are also assisted in claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), and in accessing financial services and training. EBALDC also provides VITA services at Lion Creek Crossings, in East Oakland.
Since 2003, with the assistance of hundreds of volunteers from the community, and collaboration with partner organizations, the IRS and financial supporters, VITA program has served more than 10,000 low income individuals, families, and entrepreneurs and returned more than $14 million in federal and state refunds to the community. It is estimated that about 80% of refunds are then spent locally, which generates local sales, wages, and jobs, ultimately boosting the local economy right here in the East Bay.
Tax Time Savings Initiative
Savings is a key factor in moving families up the economic ladder; however, plenty of individuals and families do not have a savings account or adequate emergency savings. Tax-time is a pivotal moment to help families save their tax refunds. At our tax sites emphasize the great opportunity for low wage filers to save all or part of their tax refunds for specific financial goals or a rainy day. EBALDC tax preparation volunteers and staff help filers split their refunds between checking and savings accounts, purchase savings bonds, or open new accounts or prepaid debit card if they don’t already have one.
EBALDC is open year-round to file prior years and amended tax returns available by appointment only. For a list of what to bring click here. We offer our services in Cantonese, Mandarin, Spanish and Tagalog. Schedule an appointment today! Please contact Lily Hu at (510) 287-5353 x363 or email at email@example.com.
Off-Season Tax Site Location:
1825 San Pablo Ave Suite 200, Oakland, CA 94612
Contact Lily Hu to schedule an appointment.
Tax Season Site Locations: January - April 2016
Asian Resource Center: 310 8th Street, Suite 101, Oakland, CA 96607
Hours: Tuesday, Wednesday, & Thursday: 1:30 - 8:00PM and Saturday: 9:30AM - 4:00PM
Lion Creek Crossings: 885 69th Avenue, Suite 102, Oakland, CA 94621
Hours: Tuesday & Thursday: 1:00 - 7:30PM and Saturday: 10:30AM - 5:00PM
This program is supported by: