Tax assistance available for Tama County residents

Free Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) is again available in Tama County this year. The option is possible thanks to the efforts of four local volunteers, and begins in early February

Two-step preparation

To have their tax return prepared by IRS-certified volunteers, local residents must make an appointment for a short 15-minute intake meeting. Before coming to that appointment they must complete two information forms (five pages total). These forms will be mailed to returning customers, and are available at the Tama County Extension Office, 203 W. High St in Toledo.

After the intake meeting the taxpayers’ information will be given to volunteers who will prepare the return. After a second preparer checks the return, the client will come back to review and sign the return. The process will take less than two weeks. Special provisions may be possible for clients who live out of town, to avoid the need for a second visit.

Families who qualify for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) are encouraged to take advantage of the free tax preparation. By avoiding tax and loan fees, these families can put 100 percent of those funds to use in ways that build financial security and help them reach additional financial goals.


Taxpayers who wish to have taxes prepared for them by a volunteer must fit certain criteria, since there are some tax issues the IRS does not allow volunteers to address. Most taxpayers with income reported on W-2 or 1099 forms can have their returns done by the volunteers. Volunteers do not prepare returns for farm or rental income, or in certain other complex situations. Taxpayers with low to moderate incomes are eligible – anyone up to $44,000 and families with two or more children up to $57,000.

To make an appointment call Tama County Extension at 641-484-2703. Local VITA efforts are supported by funding through the Iowa Center for Economic Success.