HPP’s Low-Income Tax Clinic, which offers free tax preparation and assistance to clients and low-income families, reported another record tax season this year, with an 86% increase in filed returns compared to last year. The clinic helped families obtain a total of $1,000,447 in federal refunds and approximately $403,000 in EITC (Earned Income Tax Credit). According to Tax Clinic Director Grant Schettler, at least half of last year’s tax clients return, demonstrating a high retention rate for the site.
“Clients feel very welcome here, and we are considered one of the best sites by the IRS and United Way,” Schettler said. “We get so many clients because of our great reputation; they spread the word about the clinic and our high quality work.”
The Tax Clinic would not be such a success without the help of 15 fantastic volunteers who dedicated their time and efforts this tax season. Liz Steppe is one such volunteer. “I initially got involved in doing tax preparation through sheer confusion and frustration from doing my own taxes,” Steppe said. “IRS documents were little help and the various online tax software programs were confusing and time-consuming, and I couldn’t afford to pay for someone else to do them for me. I took a class, which led me to think often about how the tax season is pretty daunting to most people. With my newfound knowledge, I wanted to extend what I had learned to people who needed it like I used to.”
Throughout the year, the Low Income Tax Clinic is in need of tax attorneys, CPAs, and Spanish/English translators to provide in-depth volunteer tax assistance to our clients. If you are interested in volunteering, please click here.