Saturday, January 29, 2011

Feb. 19: Free tax prep at AU

Free income-tax preparation to open Feb. 19 at Aurora University;

Class project to school aspiring accountants with hands-on experience

AURORA—Free income tax preparation is back at Aurora University.

The Dunham School of Business will offer its ninth annual Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program, a partnership with IRS, from 8 to noon Feb. 19, 26, March 5, 19, 26 and April 2 in the lobby of Dunham Hall, 1400 Marseillaise Place in Aurora.

The free service, including immediate e-filing, is available to low-income, elderly, and disabled residents, including non-English speaking taxpayers earning up to $50,000. No reservations are accepted.

Taxpayers should bring copies of personal documents to the service. Requested are copies of Social Security cards, driver’s license, 2010 W2s and other tax statements, state and federal 2009 returns, voided check or deposit slip, 2010 real-state tax statement and childcare provider identification (if any).

Bilingual college students will provide translation assistance for Spanish-speaking taxpayers.

About 35 business students under the tutelage of three CPAs who are accounting professors in the Dunham School—Tim Moran, David Diehl and Len Scholl—will prepare state and federal tax returns.

For a second year, students from the School of Nursing and School of Social Work will assist with tax preparation and healthcare activities.

In conjunction with the tax preparation, a third annual Health Expo at Dunham Hall will offer free blood pressure checks and memory screenings for the public.

This is the ninth consecutive year that the IRS has approved AU accounting students to prepare tax returns free for the public in the VITA program.

Last year, about 40 AU students, faculty, staff members and former students prepared a record 1,050 tax forms—525 each federal and state forms—free for the public.

AU volunteers recovered $463,500 in refunds for taxpayers last season. The largest single refund, $11,120, went to an Aurora resident. Refunds included the new rebate recovery and first-time homebuyer credits.

Since AU introduced the VITA program in 2002, AU tax preparers have prepared more than 3,000 returns, generated more than $3 million in refunds and saved taxpayers an estimated $600,000 in tax preparation fees.

Call (630) 844-7557 or e-mail for information.

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