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Are You Eligible for EITC? Get It, and Get It Right

Authored By: Internal Revenue Service

Information

Visit IRS.gov/EITC to see if you qaulify for this valuable creditWorkers may get a larger tax refund this year because of the EITC or Earned Income Tax Credit. But to get it, you must file a tax return and claim it.

Today, January 27, 2017, marks the 11th anniversary of Awareness Day, a nationwide effort to increase awareness about the EITC and other refundable credits. This year, IRS is promoting EITC and providing information on other refundable tax credits that you may be eligible for. This includes the American Opportunity Tax Credit, the Child Tax Credit and Additional Child Tax Credit.

In 2016, 26 million workers received about $65.6 billion in EITC refunds. In Pennsylvania, There were 919,000 EITC claims filed last year providing @2.1 Billion in refunds, with an average refund of $2, 271 per household.

If you worked last year and your income is less than $53,505, check out your eligibility for EITC. EITC can mean up to a $6,269 refund when you file a return and have qualifying children. Workers with no qualifying children could be eligible for a smaller credit, up to 506 dollars. On average, EITC adds 24 hundred dollars to refunds.

Why is it important to have an EITC Awareness Day each year? One-third of the EITC population changes each year. The IRS estimates only four out of five workers claim the EITC they earned. This leaves billions of dollars on the table each year. We want to get the word out to those who are eligible to file a tax return even if they don’t owe any tax to claim the EITC. Its money workers can use for groceries, rent, utilities and other bills.

EITC is complex. It varies by income, family size and your filing status. To be eligible, you must have earned income or certain disability income. This means you must have income from working for someone or working for yourself.

Find out if you are eligible using the EITC Assistant; it’s available in both English and Spanish. The Assistant helps you:

  • find your filing status,
  • find out if you have a qualifying child or children,
  • verify if you are eligible for EITC, and
  • estimate the amount of your credit.

Let the Assistant help you get it and get it right. Visit www.irs.gov/eitc to find the Assistant.

Also, if you make less than $54,000, you qualify for free tax return preparation through volunteer sites. IRS-certified volunteers prepare your tax return and find out if you qualify for EITC and other refundable credits. Find a location for free tax return preparation near you at irs.gov.

Make sure you get the right amount of credit due you. If you have someone prepare your return, bring the following to your preparer:

  • A valid driver's license or other photo id card
  • Social security cards, a social security number verification letter for all persons listed on the return
  • Birth dates for all persons listed on return
  • All income statements: Forms W-2 and 1099, Social Security, unemployment, and other statements, such as pensions, stocks, interest and any documents showing taxes withheld. If you run a business or farm, records of all income earned.
  • All records of expenses, such as tuition, mortgage interest or real estate taxes. And, if you run a business or farm, records of all related expenses.
  • Copies of last year's state and federal tax returns, if you have
  • Bank routing numbers and account numbers to direct deposit any refund
  • Dependent child care information: name and address of who you paid and either the caretaker's SSN or other tax identification number
  • If you purchased coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplace, Form 1095-A, Health Insurance Marketplace Statement.
  • Both spouses to sign forms to e-file (electronically file) a joint tax return

You can find out more about the EITC and tax issues affecting you by visiting PALawHelp.org and IRS.gov.