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VITA – Free Tax Preparation

When people are financially stable, they can make financial decisions that benefit themselves and their families, which, in turn, benefits the community. Being financially stable also puts families in a better position to handle crisis – job loss, illness or other unforeseen expenses.
Consider Byron, a father of five. A co-worker mentioned that he might qualify for an Earned Income Tax Credit. So, he went to a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance site to have his taxes prepared and found out that he was eligible for more than $5,600 in EITC. With that money, he was able to remove mold that had spread through his house, causing one of his children to have headaches and occasional asthma flare-ups.
The VITA program is just one way United Way of Acadiana is creating financial stability. In the last two years, this program put approximately $9 million back in the hands of hardworking families through free tax preparation assistance. During that period, volunteers assisted thousands of Acadiana residents in filing their taxes, helping them claim approximately $3 million each year of the nearly $30 million in Earned Income Tax Credit that goes unclaimed annually.
IRS-Certified Tax Preparers are ready to help you at the following locations to help you at the following locations:
Assist Agency – 337-788-7550 ext 138
11 North Parkerson Crowley, LA 70526 
SMILE/New Iberia – 337-365-8151
722 Walton St. New Iberia, LA 70560 
Acadiana High School – 337-984-2324
315 Rue de Belier Lafayette, LA 70506 
SMILE/Lafayette – 337-234-3272 ext 219
501 St. John St. Lafayette, LA 70501 
The Southwest Center 
for Rural Initiatives – 337-943-2410
1209 Diesi St. Opelousas, LA 70570
SMILE/St. Martin – 337-394-6013
2097 Terrace Rd. St. Martinville, LA 70582 
St. Mary CAA Central Office – 337-828-5703
1407 Barrow St. Franklin, LA 70538
ASSIST Agency – 337-898-9554
407 Charity St. Abbeville, LA 70510

Tell me about the Vita program, please.
VITA stands for Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program and it offers free tax preparation utilizing volunteers that certified and trained by the IRS.
Who is eligible for this free service?
Anyone with a household income of $62,000 or less is eligible for the free service
Do most people get a refund?
YES! Just last year we helped Acadiana residents claim $3 million in refunds
How many people took advantage of this program last year?
Over 3,000 local residents utilized our service last year.
What are the Super Tax Days?
Super tax days are tax prep. events that we utilize to bring wide scale awareness to the VITA program.
When and where are the Super Tax Days taking place? Do I need to sign up ahead of time?
Feb. 17th from 9am to 3pm at Northside High, Lafayette (first come, first served)
Feb. 24th  from 9am to 3pm at Acadiana High, Lafayette (appointment only).  Please call 232-HELP.
What should people bring with them when meeting with the tax specialist?
  • Driver’s license
  • SS card
  • W2’s and tax documents
When it comes to tax preparation, what tips can you offer folks?
Most people do not take advantage of the Earned Income Credit. We aggressively search for the Earned Income credit as it can garner over $6,000 extra on your refund.