Help Families Keep Their Hard Earned Money And Become a Free Tax Prep Volunteer
No tax background required!
Each year, the United Way and hundreds of volunteers help families and individuals who earn less than $66,000 annually file their taxes for free. Last tax season, the Free Tax Prep program (also known as VITA) helped more than 7,000 families receive over $10 million in tax refunds. With your help, we can grow that number. No prior experience required beyond the passion for wanting to help our community!
With expectations that we will still have to deal with COVID restrictions, volunteers will have the option to participate in various roles depending on their comfort level with in-person contact or their personal preferences. Volunteers are not limited to one role.
- In-Person Service Tax Preparer Some of our traditional in-person service sites will be able to reopen during tax season. These sites will have updated procedures and guidelines to enforce everyone’s health and safety, such as requirement of face masks, social distancing, and availability of hand sanitizer.
- In-Person Drop-Off Facilitator Some of our locations will offer drop-off service for those clients who are unable to initiate the virtual tax preparation on their own. Volunteers at these sites will answer any initial questions from clients, reassure clients of the validity of the program, explain the process, and help upload clients’ information on the website.
- Virtual Tax Preparer Volunteers are able to connect to our online client software to download clients’ information to prepare returns from the safety of their own homes. Through the website, volunteers will be able to email, text, and call clients to complete a thorough interview/intake process to gather all information required to prepare a complete tax return. No in-person contact required.
This year training will be provided through a combination of methods:
- Self-directed instruction using online resources. Click the link below to access the online resources.
- “Hot Topic” live webinars. Click the link below (COMING SOON) to register for these live trainings. All sessions will be recorded and available on our resource page below.
- Open Lab online sessions. Click the link below (COMING SOON) to register to attend the open lab sessions online. These sessions are available for you to ask any questions on any tax topic or about the program in general.
Online webinars will begin in November. Self-directed instruction materials will be updated late October. Please follow the links below to access materials and sign up for online sessions.
For more information, contact Debi Linderholm at (916) 856-3978 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Follow these simple steps to train and certify to be a tax preparation volunteer.
STEP #1: MATERIALS TO HELP YOU STUDY
A variety of materials are available to help you complete your training and certify. If you are new to our program, we advise you begin with the orientation videos.
Used in tandem with our online resources, we have selected “hot topics” to present in live online sessions. Our expert trainers cover the most challenging tax law topics within the scope of our program during these sessions.
Our Open Lab sessions cover practical application of tax law including the use of the electronic preparation software, TaxSlayer. Our expert trainers walk you through the preparation of a complete tax return. Also, during these sessions, trainers will be available to answer ANY question on ANY tax topic.
Volunteers screen inbound callers seeking tax assistance services, providing appointment scheduling and/or referrals to services including the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program, AARP Tax Aid and My Free Taxes. Tax law certification/experience is not required for this position. Volunteers are provided training by 2-1-1 Sacramento covering the topics of call handling techniques, tax assistance programs/screening and use of call handling systems. Bilingual volunteers are encouraged to request this position.