United Way of Summit & Medina’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program has begun providing free tax preparation services for the 2024 tax season. Households in Summit and Medina counties earning up to $64,000 per year are encouraged to dial 2-1-1 or visit uwsummit.org/VITA to sign up for an appointment.
In person and drop-off appointments are available at the Akron Financial Empowerment Center at 1060 Kenmore Blvd. in Akron and at the United Way office at 23 Public Square in Medina. For a list of required documents, visit uwsummitmedina.org/VITA.
For residents in households earning up to $79,000 per year and interested in preparing their own taxes, United Way offers free tax preparation software. Email [email protected] to request access to the free software. Experts are ready to assist with tax questions for those using the supplied tax software.
Since it launched in 2018, United Way of Summit & Medina’s VITA program has helped local residents claim more than $16 million in federal and state tax refunds. Volunteers have completed nearly 9,000 returns as of last year, with more than 1,000 additional returns expected in 2024. And because the average cost of commercial tax preparation services is more than $200, residents have saved more than $2.2 million by using the VITA program.
For Summit and Medina County residents who want guidance on how to best utilize their tax refunds, United Way of Summit & Medina also provides free one-on-one financial counseling. Offered through the Financial Empowerment Center, created through a partnership with the City of Akron, financial counseling helps residents build a sustainable budget, save, reduce debt and raise their credit scores. This service is free and available at locations in Summit and Medina counties. Simply visit uwsummitmedina.org/FEC or dial 2-1-1 to set up an appointment.
“Tax preparation can be intimidating and time-consuming for anyone,” said Jim Mullen, president and CEO of United Way of Summit & Medina. “For the many working residents and families in our community who lack access to financial resources, the expense and the anxiety of preparing their taxes leads them to leave money on the table, or else they may rely on expensive services that take a portion of their refund. Our VITA program ensures people get the maximum refund they’re entitled to, so they can take that money and catch up on bills, build their savings and start working their way to financial empowerment.”
Visit uwsummitmedina.org/VITA to learn more