Early this year, volunteers helped Pratt County taxpayers receive more than $150,000 in refunds. The Internal Revenue Service and Pratt County RSVP are looking for more volunteers to expand the service to more people and start earlier in 2013.
As an IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) site, 2013 will be RSVP's 18th year preparing basic individual income tax returns for older, low- to moderate-income and disabled taxpayers at no charge.
With electronic filing and direct deposit, taxpayers can get their refunds within a week, said Tiffany Ailstock, with the Pratt County RSVP.
Three volunteers helped last year. To serve more people, and to comply with new regulations for a reviewer to look over the preparer's work, they will need more people this year. The goal is to start offering the service in mid-January 2013, instead of Feb. 1, as in years past.
Accounting experience is not required, but volunteers need basic computer skills.
"It's basically just entering information into forms, and it calculates it for you," Ailstock commented.
Volunteers complete a free online training course before being certified. Training materials should be available in December. Once certified, volunteers are asked to give as little as four hours per week, for the entire period, or for a portion of the time.
"We're flexible," Ailstock noted.
For more information or to volunteer, call Ailstock at 620-672-7811 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Information about the VITA program is available at www.IRS.gov.