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For Immediate Release: January 30, 2009
Contact: Kerry Koonce: (515) 281-9646

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Valuable Tax Credit Available For Some Low to Moderate Income Workers

Des Moines, Iowa – People who work but don’t earn a lot of money may be eligible for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), as well as free help preparing their tax return. Today marks EITC Awareness Day, a nationwide effort to increase public awareness about EITC and free tax preparation sites.

IRS estimates that 20 to 25 percent of eligible taxpayers fail to claim the credit which could put as much as $4,824 into the pockets of a family with two children, or send as much as $2,917 to a family with one child, or up to $438 for a worker with no children. The Earned Income Tax Credit is the federal government’s largest program benefiting lower earning workers.

“The extra dollars eligible taxpayers can get through EITC can make their lives a little easier,” said Elisabeth Buck, director of Iowa Workforce Development, “but they must file tax returns, even if they aren’t required to file, and claim the credit to receive it.”

Buck said some individuals and families may qualify for the credit for the first time because of unemployment or other changes in their financial, marital or parental status during the past year.

Taxpayers with the earnings of or below $38,646 ($41,646 if married filing jointly) for families with two or more children; $33,995 ($36,995 married filing jointly) for families with one child or $12,880 ($15,880 married filing jointly) if there are no children should check to see if they qualify.

The EITC is a valuable but complex tax break. Free help is available to determine eligibility and file to claim the credit at Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites or, for those who cannot visit a site during hours/days of operation, at a local IRS Taxpayer Assistance Center. To locate a VITA site near you, call 1-800-829-8482 and for more information on where to locate your local IRS Taxpayer Assistance Center, please call the toll free number 1-800-829-1040 or visit IRS.gov.


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