Beginning February 1 and continuing through April 17, AARP Foundation is providing free tax assistance and preparation through its Tax-Aide program. AARP Foundation Tax-Aide, celebrating its 50th year, is the nation’s largest free tax assistance and preparation service. Since its inception, the program has served more than 50 million taxpayers.
Last year, 125 Foundation Tax-Aide volunteers in South Dakota helped more than 9,500 people file their federal and state tax returns. The program is offered at more than 50 sites in 39 communities across South Dakota, including libraries, senior centers, and other convenient locations.
“AARP Foundation Tax Aide is an invaluable resource for many low-income South Dakotans,” said Erik Gaikowski, AARP South Dakota State Director. “In 2017 alone, volunteers secured more than $6 million in income tax refunds for South Dakotans who are often stretching every dollar to procure their basic needs.”
South Dakota was not the only hard-working program. In 2017, program volunteers from across the nation helped 2.5 million people navigate complicated tax codes, ensure proper credits and deductions, and file their federal and state tax returns. Taxpayers who used AARP Foundation Tax-Aide received $1.37 billion in income tax refunds and more than $222 million in Earned Income Tax Credits (EITCs). They also avoided any tax preparation fees and pitches for high-interest tax credit or refund loans.
AARP Foundation Tax-Aide started in 1968 with just four volunteers working at one site. Today, nearly 35,000 volunteers serve low- to moderate-income taxpayers at 5,000 locations nationwide. AARP Foundation Tax-Aide volunteers are trained and IRS-certified each year to ensure they know about and understand the latest changes to the U.S. Tax Code. There is no fee for this service, and AARP membership is not required.
For more information, including which documents to bring to the tax site, visit aarpfoundation.org/taxhelp. AARP Foundation Tax-Aide is offered in conjunction with the IRS.