Gov. Andrew Cuomo is encouraging low-income workers in New York to take advantage of free income tax preparation ahead of the April 15 filing deadline.
There are more than 700 free tax prep sites statewide thanks to the IRS and AARP. IRS sites are available for individuals and families bringing home below $52,000 in annual income. AARP sites do not have income limits.
There is an IRS-sponsored Volunteer Income Tax Assistance site, or VITA, at Ellis Health Center on McClellan Street in Schenectady and at the Schenectady Community Action Program on Albany Street.
Tax prep sites are available in every county in the state. A full list of sites in the Capital Region can be found using the IRS’s site locator at http://irs.treasury.gov/freetaxprep/ or call 211 to find local AARP sites.
Volunteers at tax prep sites are trained to help eligible people receive Earned Income Tax Credits, or EITC, which are refundable tax benefits for low-income workers.
Those benefits vary based on income, family size and filing status. Families with three or more children could qualify for up to $8,159 in federal, state and New York City credits.
According to a press release from the governor’s office, in 2013 1.8 million New Yorkers claimed tax credits and they received a total of about $5 billion in benefits.