Each spring, IRS-certified accounting students from the University at Buffalo School of Management provide free tax preparation services to qualifying individuals and families.
Offered as part of the IRS-sponsored Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program, the service is staffed and led by volunteers from the UB Chapter of Beta Alpha Psi, an international honors organization for accounting and finance students and professionals, and the UB Accounting Association.
Western New York residents and students are encouraged to take advantage of this free service, which, by IRS estimates, can save taxpayers $100 to $300 in preparation fees.
This service can be especially valuable to low-income tax filers by helping them apply for earned income tax credits that can provide a needed boost in annual income. The tax credits, which can reduce or completely eliminate income taxes by refunding taxes already withheld from wages, can mean as much as $5,028 for a family with two children.
Cumulatively, School of Management student volunteers have brought nearly $13 million in tax refunds back into the community by preparing more than 9,700 tax returns. Approximately $2.6 million was from the Earned Income Credit, helping families most in need of support.