Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the IRS sponsored VITA (and TCE) tax preparation services shut down in early March leaving a large number of taxpayers without their standard way to file their 2019 tax returns. CAHS has coordinated [along with local partners] over 60 of these sites throughout CT. Having lost the ability to deliver face to face tax filing services, several site volunteers worked together to develop a remotely accessed, virtual platform. Trialing its utility with low-income VITA filers, it was logical that this same platform and streamlined process could be extended to citizens who qualify for the Economic Impact Payment (EIP) program either, via 2018 or 2019 tax return income limits or because they are not required to file a federal tax return (non-filers).
It is these two audiences that Virtual VITA is trying to positively impact by assisting them with their required filings. For most of our low to moderate income population tax time is an opportunity to maximize the credits, rebates and initiatives they are entitled to from the US government. Virtual VITA is an encrypted online virtual platform that allows taxpayers to get their taxes done in a safe and secure way.
To date, Virtual VITA has served approximately 300 clients. (combination of tax payers and non-filers). Comparing our 2018 VITA client list to our 2019 tax season client list, we estimated that approximately 7,500 taxpayers may still need to have their taxes done.
To support the statewide efforts of our 800+ tax volunteers, consider donating to the
CT Association for Human Services.
For more information on Virtual VITA: http://www.cahs.org/virtual_vita