Tax preparation can be hectic, costly, time-consuming, and usually requires expertise. If you are a low-income individual in Ventura County, there are volunteer organizations that can help you file your returns accurately for free every year. They can also help you claim any tax credits for which you qualify. Here are some of the ways in which you can get tax assistance in Ventura County.
Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA)
The IRS has collaborated with various volunteer organizations to offer free tax services to qualified workers in California via VITA. The program has set up numerous return preparation sites across Ventura County. You can visit any site for help with your tax return preparations for wages, dividends received, pension income, gambling winnings, and more. If you’re eligible, you can claim your tax refunds with the help of certified volunteers.
VITA is generally available to low-income individuals that need tax preparation assistance, including:
- Anyone earning $57,000 or less
- Individuals with disabilities
- Taxpayers who do not speak English
Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE)
People aged 60 or older can utilize free tax help courtesy of the TCE program. The IRS partners with eligible organizations to advise the elderly about tax issues and help them prepare and file their taxes. The federal agency usually provides the funds that the volunteers incur while providing eligible individuals with tax assistance at convenient locations in Ventura County.
The elderly can access tax return preparation help under TCE between January 1 and April 15 each year. However, tax counseling is available to eligible taxpayers throughout the year.
Tax Assistance Center (TAC)
There are numerous TAC locations across Ventura County. The IRS has set up these offices so that you can walk in for in-person tax assistance. In these offices, IRS personnel can review your tax documents and adjust your account for free. You can also ask questions about tax return preparation processes or even negotiate a manageable tax payment plan with the IRS. TACs are open to all members of the public, and you’ll usually need to set up an appointment before visiting any TAC location for tax assistance.
IRS Free File
The IRS Free File is a partnership between the tax agency and private players to provide free online tax assistance to eligible taxpayers. If you work in Ventura County, you can get this help by visiting an IRS partner site. There are two ways to get this help:
- By visiting an IRS Free File partner website with software that enables you to prepare and file your taxes online for free- This option is only available to people with an adjusted gross income (AGI) of $72,000 or less.
- By filling out federal tax forms (Free File Fillable Forms) and filing your tax returns online for free- You require tax preparation knowledge to use this option as no expert guidance is provided. This IRS Free File option is available to all, including individuals with an AGI greater than $72,000.
Documents That You Need to Bring Along
Some of the documents you’ll need to bring along to free tax assistance sites in Ventura County are:
- Your W-2 and 1099 forms for relevant income information
- Your photo ID or driving license
- Social security card
- Copy of the previous year’s tax return
- Proof of your date of birth as well as that of your spouse and dependents
- Proof of bank account for direct tax credit deposits, if eligible
- Form 1095 for your health insurance information
These are some of the tax assistance programs available for small businesses and individuals in Ventura County. Do you need professional help building your company from the ground up? At Business Forward Ventura County, we provide extensive resources to help nurture business ideas and startups locally and nationwide. Contact us today for help taking your business plan to the next level.