Are you looking for a volunteer opportunity in your community? Here is your chance to lend a helping hand. You can learn to prepare taxes and make a difference at the same time by becoming a volunteer with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program.
You will receive quality training to provide free tax help for low-to-moderate-income families who need assistance preparing their tax returns. Every filing season, tax volunteers make a huge difference in their communities by helping prepare millions of tax returns at thousands of free tax prep sites nationwide. Although over 3.5 million returns were prepared last year, with your help, many more free returns can be completed.
As a tax volunteer, you will be assigned to work with a sponsoring organization. Once you complete your training, you will begin volunteering at a location in your community. Tax sites are generally open various days, nights and weekends, and the hours are flexible. You will surely find a volunteer site close to you.
As a volunteer, you will get all the specialized training you need, so there is no need to worry if you have limited knowledge of tax law. You can also choose a volunteer role that does not require tax law certification.
There is something for everyone. Here are some of the volunteer roles needed at free tax preparation sites:
Greeter/Screener — as a greeter/screener, you will greet everyone visiting the site. This role is perfect for those who have no interest in preparing tax returns but love socializing and talking to people. You will screen taxpayers to determine the type of assistance they need and confirm they brought all the necessary documents to have their tax returns completed. Tax law certification is not required for this position.
Tax Preparer — after successfully completing your tax law certification, as a volunteer tax preparer, you will provide free tax return preparation for eligible taxpayers using electronic filing software. Tax law certification is required for this volunteer role.
Quality Reviewer— as a quality reviewer, you will conduct a quality review of all tax returns completed by volunteer tax preparers, ensuring that every taxpayer receives quality service and an accurate tax return. Tax law certification is required for this volunteer role.
Tax Coach — as a tax coach, you will work at a self-preparation site. While working at the site, you will provide tax law assistance and help taxpayers navigate Web-based, self-preparation software while they prepare their own tax returns. Tax law certification is required for this volunteer role.
Site Coordinator/Administrator — if you have excellent organizational and leadership skills, volunteering as the site coordinator/administrator may be the position that fits you best. The site coordinator acts as the primary resource for sharing knowledge of the program and assists with any issues that may arise. You will develop and maintain schedules for all volunteers to ensure adequate coverage, and that supplies and equipment at your site are stocked and operational. Tax law certification is not always required for this position.