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Wednesday
Apr 23rd

IRS reaches out to Minnesotans experiencing financial hardship

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cashsybmolThe Internal Revenue Service and community partners nationwide will open hundreds of locations on Super Saturday, March 21, in an effort to reach Americans who may be struggling through difficult financial times and low- to moderate-income taxpayers who need help preparing tax returns.

In the Twin Cities, IRS offices will open their doors for Super Saturday from 9 am - 2 pm in St. Paul at 30 E. Seventh St. (nearest entrance is across the street from Walgreens) and in Minneapolis at 250 Marquette Ave. Volunteer tax preparation sites will also be open at select locations throughout the state.

More than 250 IRS offices nationally will be open on Super Saturday to help taxpayers earning $42,000 or less prepare basic federal tax returns.  IRS employees can also answer basic tax law questions, resolve tax issues and help establish payment agreements for qualifying taxpayers struggling to pay their taxes or assist those having a hard time keeping up with tax payments.

“We want to go the extra mile to help – especially for taxpayers who have been compliant in the past and may now be experiencing a hardship situation,” said IRS Spokesperson Carrie Resch.  “These are tough times for a lot of people, and we want to provide services when it’s more convenient for people who are working or busy during the week.”

On Super Saturday, taxpayers also can learn if they qualify for the Earned Income Tax Credit.  Difficult times may mean more people than ever could qualify for the EITC because of changes in their income last year.  The EITC could mean as much as $4,824 for some families, but people need to file a return to get it, even if they aren’t normally required to file.  Single filers, grandparents caring for grandchildren or taxpayers without children also may qualify.  About 286, 450 workers in Minnesota received more than $502 million in EITC last year, but the IRS estimates that one in four households eligible for the credit never claims it.

Some Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) and Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) sites also will offer free Super Saturday services to low- to moderate-income (generally below $42,000) people and seniors. Trained community volunteers help taxpayers prepare returns. Most sites also offer free electronic filing. To locate the nearest VITA or TCE site, call United Way at 211.

“What makes this Saturday ‘super’ is the large-scale effort to help people experiencing hard times,” said Resch. “We are opening far more IRS locations than are typically open on any other weekend and combining that with our partner sites which are also opening their doors.”

Super Saturday services:

•        Federal tax return preparation including free electronic filing that can speed refunds within 10 days
•        Payments or payment arrangements
•        Assistance with letters, notices and levies on your wages or bank accounts
•        Copies of tax returns and transcripts
•        Basic federal tax forms

Whether taxpayers visit an IRS Taxpayer Assistance Center, a free income tax preparation site or a professional tax return preparer, they should bring certain documents with them, including:

•        Valid driver's license or photo identification (self and spouse, if applicable)
•        Social Security cards and dates of birth for all persons listed on the return
•        All income statements: Forms W-2, 1099, Social Security, Unemployment, or other benefits statements, self-employment records and any documents showing taxes withheld
•        Dependent child care information: payee’s name, address and SSN or TIN
•        Routing and account numbers for direct debit or deposit
•        Prior year tax return (if available)
•        Any other pertinent documents or papers

 

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