Jackie Pober, Regional Coordinator at Impact Alabama, tells Cherish Lombard some families in Mobile are eligible for free tax preparation services. Services will be provided to working families making less than $52,000/year with kids in the home, or $20,000/year without kids in the home.
Families who are eligible for free tax preparation services may also be eligible for the Earned Income Tax Credit. The EITC is the federal government’s largest and most successful antipoverty program for low-income, working families. Each year families in Mobile lose millions of dollars to commercial tax preparers simply to access this benefit.
Families can also enter the SaveNow WinLater Sweepstakes for a chance to win a $5,000 cash Grand Prize by investing in savings bonds. For every $50 eligible families invest in a federal savings bond, they will earn a chance to win a $5,000 Grand Prize at the end of tax season. SaveNow WinLater, a signature initiative of the Center for Ethics & Social Responsibility at The University of Alabama, is a nationally unique, prize-linked savings opportunity. CESR partners with Doorways to Dreams, a financial innovations nonprofit. D2D’s similar prize-linked savings initiative based in Michigan, Save to Win, garnered incredible success in 2009 after only eleven months; over 11,500 Michigan residents opened accounts and saved $8.5 million.
Impact Alabama’s SaveFirst initiative is in its eighth year of operation. Last year, over 425 trained students from more than sixteen campuses prepared tax returns for more than 6,200 families in cities statewide. In just six weeks, our statewide campus collaboration helped these working families secure more than $11.7 million in tax refunds, saving them over $1.9 million in commercial tax preparation fees. Impact Alabama, an AmeriCorps® Program, is housed at the Center for Ethics & Social Responsibility at The University of Alabama.
Alabama residents interested in participating in SaveNow WinLater or in scheduling a free tax preparation appointment should call 1-888-99-TAX-AL. Daytime, evening and weekend hours for tax preparation are available at Gordon Smith Community Center (2448 Gordon Smith Drive Mobile, AL 36617) and Cottage Hill Community Center (5013 Cottage Hill Road Mobile, AL 36693).
Gordon Smith Community Center
2448 Gordon Smith Drive
Mobile, AL 36617
Cottage Hill Community Center
5013 Cottage Hill Road
Mobile, AL 36693