Frequently Asked Questions
"What can VITA help me with?"
We can help you prepare tax returns that include:
• Wages, salaries, etc. (Form W-2)
• Interest Income (Form 1099-INT)
• Dividends Received (Form 1099-DIV)
• State Tax Refunds (Form 1099-G)
• Unemployment Benefits (Form 1099-G)
• IRA Distributions (Form 1099-R)
• Pension Income (Forms 1099-R, RRB-1099, CSA-1099)
• Social Security Benefits (Form SSA-1099)
• Simple Capital Gain/Loss (Form 1099-B)
• Sale of Home (Form 1099-S) limited
• Self-employed Income (Form 1099-MISC) limited
• Gambling Winnings (Form W-2G)
• Cancellation of Debt (Form 1099-C) limited
• Health Savings Accounts (Form 1099-SA) limited
• Itemized Deductions limited
• Education Credits (Form 1098-T)
• Child Tax Credit
• Earned Income Credit
• ACA Statements (Forms 1095-A, B or C)
• Prior Year and Amended Returns limited
limited = we cannot prepare every situation that may arise within this form and a tax professional should be hired.
We cannot help you prepare:
• Schedule C with losses
• Complicated Schedule D (capital gains and losses)
• Form SS-5 (request for Social Security Number)
• Form 8606 (non-deductible IRA)
• Form 8615 (minor’s investment income)
• Form SS-8 (determination of worker status for purposes of federal employment taxes and income tax withholding)
• Parts 4 & 5 of Form 8962 (Premium Tax Credits)
If you have any of these forms we suggest finding a professional tax preparer.
“Do I have to pay anything to be helped?”
No. All services are offered for free.
“How do I get tax preparation and help for FREE?”
Call or click to make an appointment (sorry, no walk-ins allowed.)
“Why are walk-ins not allowed?"
Anyone receiving tax return preparation assistance must contact us first.
We need to make sure we can help you, there are certain tax forms that we cannot file.
“What do I need to bring to my appointment?”
ALL tax documents you received for the tax year for every source of income (jobs, self-employment, dividends, interest, SSA).
Bring a Government-issued ID and Social Security/ITIN card for EVERY person to be listed on the tax returns.
Any proof of expenses or deductions
Bring at a minimum, last year’s tax returns, State and Federal.
“I have to file taxes in another State. Can you help me?”
At this time, we apologize that we can only help those with Federal and California State taxes. Please find a qualified tax professional in your area.
“I received help last year from VITA, can I come back again this year?”
Of course! You can come back this year, make an appointment though and bring last year's return.
"Great job VITA volunteer, I can leave a tip, right?"
Sorry, we can't accept any tips or money for our volunteer services.
“Is this supported by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS)?”
Yes, follow this link to learn more: Free Tax Return Preparation for You by Volunteers
“What does VITA/TCE stand for?”
VITA/TCE stands for Volunteer Income Tax Assistance / Tax Counseling for the Elderly.
"My question is still unanswered..."
Click HERE to ask a volunteer.