Most people don’t want to think about it but it’s the time a year to begin thinking about filing 2021 tax returns. For many working people in the South End and Chinatown there’s some relief from the confusing process of figuring out taxes.
Action for Boston Community Development’s (ABCD) South End Neighborhood Service Center, 554 Columbus Avenue; the Asian American Civic Association, 87 Tyler Street, 5th floor; or the Harrison Avenue Head Start & Children’s Services, 595 Harrison Avenue are all offering free tax help. The offices will be opened Monday through Friday to help begin the tax filing process.
Taxes for qualifying residents can be done through appointment by calling the offices or by calling ABCD Connect at 617-348-6329.
ABCD President/CEO John Drew is urging residents who earned $58,000 or less in 2021 to schedule an appointment at the Kennedy Family Service Center and take full advantage of the program.
Drew said this year EITC provides a married couple with three or more children earning up to $57,414 and filing jointly with the maximum federal 2021 EITC of $6,728 plus the state EITC of $2,018 for a total EITC of $ 8,746. For details regarding family size and payments, see bostonabcd.org/tax-assistance.
EITC can also be accessed retroactively for the previous three years, so eligible taxpayers can qualify for a sizable sum.
Drew noted that ABCD has worked with people buried under a mountain of debt, people who felt they were out of options and who didn’t know they qualified for EITC. The IRS estimates one out of five eligible taxpayers will not claim EITC and will lose out on this important credit.
In addition, taxpayers who were eligible to receive the American Rescue Plan payment of $1,400 but did not receive the full amount in 2021 can claim the Recovery Rebate Credit against their 2021 income tax.
For two decades ABCD has worked in tandem with the Boston Tax Help Coalition. ABCD played a significant role in founding the coalition in 2001.
Last week, Mayor Michelle Wu urged qualified residents to take advantage of the free tax help.
“Boston residents can save hundreds of dollars per household through the Boston Tax Help Coalition’s free tax preparation,“ said Wu. “Staff and volunteers will also help eligible residents receive the highest Earned Income Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit possible. These free resources are not only a valued resource to thousands of Boston residents, but serve as a model for similar programs around the country.”