Today@Sam Article

University Offers Free Tax Assistance to Community

Feb. 2, 2022
SHSU Media Contact: Emily Binetti

VITACenterTax season is almost here, and for many, filing Federal Income Taxes is uncharted territory. A service provided to the community that some may not know about offers those whose household income is $58,000 or less, free assistance in filing taxes.

Sam Houston State University’s Bearkat Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Center will provide free federal income tax assistance in an online format via Zoom. The service is offered from Feb. 3 to April 14, 2022.

Last year, the center successfully processed approximately 124 tax returns. Considering the challenges many have faced recently, Trevor England, assistant professor in accounting, hopes more people who qualify for the free assistance will connect with the center for help.  

To aid in this endeavor, the center has added an off-campus physical drop-off in the university’s Small Business Development Center located at 1 Financial Plaza, Suite 300, in Huntsville.

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“Participants can bring their tax materials to the drop-off location,” England said. “The center will review the materials, scan them and upload them to a secure portal. Their tax return will be prepared at a later date, and we will call them once it is ready for filing.”

Offered through the SHSU College of Business Administration, VITA services are not only free, they are also a reliable and trusted source for preparing tax returns. All VITA volunteers who prepare returns must take and pass tax law training that meets or exceeds IRS standards. Additionally, the center operates under IRS approved security protocols. 

Those interested in using the service can check online to see if their return qualifies for free VITA services through the Program Eligibility Checklist. Required appointments are available on Thursdays from 3:30 p.m. – 7 p.m. To make an appointment, contact the VITA Center at vitacenter@shsu.edu or call 936-294-1263. 

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