Most people don’t want to think about it, but it’s the time of year to begin thinking about filing their 2018 tax returns. For many working people in East Boston there’s some relief from the confusing process of figuring out taxes.
East Boston APAC, in partnership with the City of Boston, kicked off its annual Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) and Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) program at its office on Meridian Street. The office will be opened Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. to help begin the tax filing process. Taxes for qualifying residents can be done through appointment by calling the APAC office at (617) 567-8857.
For many working people in Eastie the program has provided some relief from the confusing process of figuring out taxes. Qualified hard working low-wage workers often receive significant EITC credits and see a big increase in their tax returns through the free program. This is money that can directly help low-income residents who work hard for their money. It can be used to pay the heat, food and rent costs that are weighing people down.
Last year, APAC returned over $1 million back into the pockets of Eastie residents through the EITC program. APAC was one of several free tax preparation sites in the city that made filing taxes trouble-free for hundreds of Eastie’s low-income residents and families.
The EITC credit can be accessed retroactively for the past three years, so qualifying low-income workers may qualify for a considerable sum.
Also seniors ages 65 and older were eligible to receive tax refunds from the State of Massachusetts through the “Senior Circuit Breaker Tax Credit”. This credit was available to all eligible seniors who paid unsubsidized rent or property taxes and was also retroactive for three years. The “Senior Circuit Breaker” offered a tremendous financial opportunity for those who qualify.
Initiated by the IRS in 1969, the EITC and VITA is a nationwide program that assists taxpayers earning up to $58,000 a year. VITA sites are generally located at community and neighborhood centers like APAC, libraries, schools, shopping malls and other convenient locations such as community colleges in low income areas.
Eligible Eastie residents with three or more qualifying children filing a return qualified if they made $49,194 ($54,884 married filing jointly). For a resident filing a return with two qualifying children qualified if they made $45,802 ($51,492 married filing jointly). Residents with one qualifying child filing a return qualified if they made $40,320 ($46,010 married filing jointly). Residents with no children qualified if they made $15,270 ($20,9500 married filing jointly).
The maximum amount of credit for Tax Year 2018 will be $6,431 with three or more qualifying children, $5,716 with two qualifying children, $3,461 with one qualifying child and $519 with no qualifying children.
Things you will need to bring if going through APAC’s EITC program;
Valid Government Issued Photo ID
Social Security card or Individual Taxpayer ID Letter (ITIN) for you, your dependents and/or your spouse
All 1099 forms – 1099G (unemployment), 1099R (pension payments), 1099INT (bank interest), 1099SSA (Social Security)
All W2 forms from all jobs for 2018
Proof of health insurance (health insurance cards, 1099-HC, 1095-A, etc.) for taxpayer, spouse, and all dependents
Total child care expenses in 2018, and child care provider’s name, address, and Employer Identification Number (EIN) or SSN
All 1098T forms (tuition payments), receipts for materials and books and bursar statement
Total student loan interest paid (1098E)
A copy of last year’s tax return
Bank issued printed account and routing numbers for direct deposit of your tax refund
Proof of any deductible out of pocket expenses (annual BWSC, 1098E, charitable receipts, etc.)
Any mail from the Massachusetts Department of Revenue
Any mail from the IRS
Taxpayers who have received or expect to receive health insurance credits need to bring proof of all household income.
Without all these documents, APAC cannot complete your tax returns.