Starting this week, Indiana University Maurer School of Law students will continue their annual tradition of helping qualified Monroe County residents prepare their taxes for free.
Bloomington law students will join students from IU’s Kelley School of Business and School of Public and Environmental Affairs to participate in the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance, or VITA, Program. VITA assistance at IU is open to members of the IU and Monroe County communities with household incomes of less than $54,000, with services available from Feb. 5 to March 27.
Maurer students will offer tax services at the law school’s Baier Hall, 211 S. Indiana Ave., from 6 to 9 p.m. every Tuesday and Wednesday except March 12 and 13. Services will also be available from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 2, 23 and 30 at the Kelley School’s Hodge Hall, 1309 E. 10th St., Room HH2057.
Students will be available to assist taxpayers during that time on a first-come, first-served basis. Taxpayers seeking assistance must bring their W-2s, photo IDs, Social Security cards for themselves and their dependents and other income documents. Spouses filing jointly must both be present.
Previous tax returns are not required at the VITA clinic, but are helpful.
Last year, more than 50 IU VITA volunteers offered roughly 70 hours of tax prep to more than 700 taxpayers.
“VITA is a tremendous resource for the local community,” Leandra Lederman, a tax law professor and director of the law school’s tax program, said in a statement. “Qualifying taxpayers receive assistance from trained students, and students gain extraordinary first-hand experience helping those who need it. It’s a great program that benefits everyone involved.”
VITA services are not currently available to international students, but the law school said the university’s Office of International Services is developing an alternative mechanism to help those students with their taxes.
The filing deadline is April 15.