United Way of Southwestern Pennsylvania is now offering free, in-person tax preparation throughout the region. This year, 470 volunteers have signed up to help.

In its 10th year, United Way of Southwestern Pennsylvania will offer free, in-person tax preparation at 30 sites across the region to eligible working individuals and families. Appointments can be made now; sites opened the week of Jan. 21. Services are available to low-income individuals and eligible furloughed government employees, and the IRS has reported they will continue to push refunds through if there is a government shutdown.

This year, 470 volunteers have signed up to help individuals across the region file their taxes, help work through any challenges, and assist in getting the various tax credits they have earned throughout the year.

During the 2018 tax season, hundreds of IRS-certified volunteers dedicated more than 22,000 hours to help prepare over 10,400 tax returns, helping taxpayers save over $1 million in paid preparation fees while returning over $15 million in tax refunds.

Many families who use United Way’s Free Tax Prep service are eligible for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), one of the nation’s largest anti-poverty programs. Taxpayers who qualify and claim the credit could pay less federal tax, pay no tax, or even get a refund of $500 to over $6,400.

This year’s 13th Annual EITC Awareness Day will be held on Friday, Jan. 26, to help ensure millions of workers secure the tax credit they earned.

Appointments for free tax preparation can be made now by dialing 2-1-1, texting 898-211, or visiting the United Way website. Households with a total annual income up to $55,000 may qualify for free in-person tax preparation; free online tax assistance is available for individuals and families with a total annual income
up to $66,000.

United Way of Southwestern Pennsylvania, serving Allegheny, Butler, Westmoreland, Fayette and Southern Armstrong counties, leads and mobilizes the caring power of individuals, the business community and organizations to help local people in need measurably improve their lives. United Way creates long-lasting change for the betterment of our community.