Free Tax Prep Services Offered Around Southern Cameron Co.

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Monday, January 7, 2013 - 4:31pm

It may seem as though you have plenty of time to get your taxes done, after all April is still a few months away, but for some, the sooner, the better.

"We really want to encourage people to get their taxes done as early as possible, in February, especially for those families who have students that are trying to get into college or in college who have to fill out their application for federal financial aid, the FASFA form," says United Way Financial Stability Coordinator, Keren Arista.

Being that financial aid is linked to taxes, there is some times lag time between the IRS database linking up with the FAFSA application; that time is precious says Arista. The longer it takes to complete the FASFA form, the lower on the list a student will be in terms of receiving financial aid. It's doled out on a first come first serve basis.

United Way will open their free tax prep sites, dozens of them, at the end of this month. You can call 2-1-1 to find the nearest location to you...

Families making under 51-thousand dollars are eligible for the free tax prep services.

In addition, this year a few new sites will be available across the lower Rio Grande Valley, Pace and Lopez High Schools will now offer services, as well as the Harlingen Outreach Center.

"The need is great, just that assistance to help our families you know in difficult economic times, not to have to pay to get their taxes done and to avoid the extra fees than can come with getting a rapid refund or anything like that," says Arista

The vita sites file taxes electronically, which often allows those filing to receive refunds faster.

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