Get the Most Out of Your Tax Refund and Find Out If You Are Eligible for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC)

Tax season is almost here, so take advantage of tax preparation assistance to make sure that you’re able to prepare your taxes securely and apply for any income-based credits and deductions you’ve earned. This includes filing for the Earned Income Tax Credit, (EITC) if you qualify, and getting a much-deserved break on your taxes. Assistance is available onsite (for in-person and drop-off services) or through your home computer (for online services).

Food Bank for New York City

If your 2021 household income was below $60,000 (with or without dependents), our partner Food Bank For New York City is offering free tax preparation events. In-person and drop-off tax preparation services are available at sites throughout the five boroughs, and you can also take advantage of online tax preparation services from the comfort of your home.

Ariva

If your 2021 household income was below $58,000 (or $32,000 if you are single and have no dependents), our partner Ariva is also offering free tax preparation events. You can choose to use in-person or drop-off tax preparation services at sites throughout the Bronx. If your 2021 household income was below $68,000 (or $45,000 if you are single and have no dependents), they are also offering online tax preparation services from the comfort of your home.

NYC Free Tax Prep

If your 2021 household income was below $72,000 (or $50,000 if you are single and have no dependents), the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs’ Office of Financial Empowerment is offering free tax preparation events. You can choose in-person or drop-off tax preparation services at sites throughout the five boroughs, and you may also take advantage of online tax preparation services from the comfort of your home.

Claim Your EITC

Find out whether you meet the income requirements for the EITC by using the 2021 tax guidelines listed below:

  • Income below $51,464 ($57,414 if married, filing a joint return) with three or more dependent children
  • Income below $47,915 ($53,865 if married, filing a joint return) with two dependent children
  • Income below $42,158 ($48,108 if married, filing a joint return) with one dependent child
  • Income below $21,430 ($27,380 if married, filing a joint return) with no dependent children

If Your Household Income Is Below $72,000, You Can Visit One of These Organizations for Free Tax Preparation in the Five Boroughs

You CAN receive free tax preparation assistance even if you itemize the following deductions:

  • Medical and dental expenses
  • State and local property or sales tax you paid
  • Interest on your mortgage and/or investments
  • Gifts to charity
  • Certain work-related expenses

You CANNOT receive free tax preparation assistance if:

  • you are filing a tax return in another state;
  • you have self-employment income (reported on Form 1099-MISC or from your own business), and you incurred deductible expenses to earn your income, except if you are a child-care provider or cab driver with $10,000 or less in expenses;
  • you have rental income;
  • you pay alimony;
  • you have capital loss carryover; or
  • you have additional deductions, forms or schedules other than those mentioned above or listed in the section “What You Need to Have Your Taxes Prepared” including large Schedule D (stock market) or Schedule E (real estate).
For all in-person and drop-off services, both Food Bank For New York City and Ariva require appointments. Some NYC Tax Prep sites also require appointments. In addition, you will be required to follow COVID-19 safety guidelines, including wearing a mask and social distancing at all sites. You must provide proof that you are fully vaccinated in order to obtain services in person.

Visit www.FoodBankNYC.org/taxhelp, www.Ariva.org or www1.nyc.gov/site/dca/consumers/file-your-taxes.page for details.

Option 1: In-Person Tax Preparation Services (By Appointment Only)

Filing Your Taxes with the Help of a Tax Expert

In-person services with one-on-one electronic filing (e-filing) are available, at no charge, at tax preparation sites. A knowledgeable Internal Revenue Service (IRS)-certified tax preparer will sit with you to complete an accurate tax return. The tax preparer will review your information with you and help you file your taxes, as well as file for the EITC if you qualify.

Food Bank For New York City will provide this service if your 2021 household income was below $60,000 (with or without dependents). Appointments are required, and you must provide proof that you are fully vaccinated for in-person services. To learn about locations and hours and to make an appointment, visit www.FoodBanknyc.org/taxhelp/. If you have questions, call (646) 981-6111.

Ariva will also offer this service at several Bronx locations if your 2021 household income was $58,000 or less (or $32,000 or less if you are single and have no dependents). Appointments are required, and you must provide proof that you are fully vaccinated for in-person services. To make an appointment, call (718) 292-2983 or e-mail [email protected].

NYC Free Tax Prep, offered by the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs’ Office of Financial Empowerment, will provide this service if your 2021 household income was below $72,000 (or $50,000 or less if you are single and have no dependents). Some sites require appointments. To learn about locations and hours and to make an appointment, visit www1.nyc.gov/site/dca/consumers/file-your-taxes.page.

Onsite Option 2: Drop-off Tax Preparation Services (By Appointment Only)

E-filing Your Taxes with Onsite Help

Drop-off services with one-on-one telephonic electronic filing (e-filing) are available, at no charge, at tax preparation sites. When you drop off your income- and tax-related documents, a certified tax preparer will scan them so that your taxes can be prepared at a later time. The tax preparer will then call you to review your information and help you file your taxes, as well as file for the EITC if you qualify.

Food Bank For New York City will provide this service if your 2021 household income was below $60,000 (with or without dependents). Appointments are required. To learn about locations and hours and to make an appointment, visit www.foodbanknyc.org/taxhelp/. If you have questions, call (646) 981-6111.

Ariva will also offer this service at several Bronx locations if your 2021 household income was below $58,000 (or $32,000 if you are single and have no dependents). Appointments are required. To make an appointment, call (718) 292-2983 or email [email protected].

NYC Free Tax Prep, offered by the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs’ Office of Financial Empowerment, will provide this service if your 2021 household income was below $72,000 (or $50,000 or less if you are single and have no dependents). Some sites require appointments. For information about locations, hours and appointments, visit www1.nyc.gov/site/dca/consumers/file-your-taxes.page.

Here’s how drop-off e-filing works:

  1. Only the person(s) filing will be allowed on the premises (the only exceptions are caregivers and children). You will also need to bring everything listed in the section “What You Need to Have Your Taxes Prepared.”
  2. A site volunteer will verify your identity, review your income- and tax-related documents, and ask you to complete an intake form.
  3. Your documents will be securely scanned so that an onsite certified tax preparer can process your tax return at a later time.
  4. Your certified tax preparer will call you within 48 to 72 hours to go over your tax return and complete the e-filing process.
  5. Your tax return will be electronically filed! You must have access to a computer and an email address, because the link to your completed tax return will be sent by email. If you do not have an active email, you will receive an appointment to pick up a copy of your tax return.

Option 3: Online Tax Preparation Services

E-filing Your Taxes Remotely

As long as your 2021 household income was below $60,000 (with or without dependents), Food Bank For New York City also offers the free Virtual Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (Virtual VITA) program for convenient electronic filing (e-filing) from your home. Visit www.FoodBankNYC.org/taxhelp for more information.

Ariva will also offer this free service as long as your 2021 household income was below $68,000 (or $45,000 if you are single and have no dependents). Email [email protected] to learn how to e-file from home.

If your 2021 household income was below $72,000 (or $50,000 if you are single and have no dependents), the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs’ Office of Financial Empowerment will provide this service through NYC Free Tax Prep. For locations visit www1.nyc.gov/site/dca/consumers/file-your-taxes.page.

Here’s how online e-filing works:

  1. You must have access to a computer, an email address and a cell phone (preferably a smartphone) to use this option.
  2. You will receive an appointment for a video chat, during which you will verify your identity.
  3. You will then be asked to complete an online intake form and to upload your income- and tax-related documents using a secure link.
  4. A Quality Reviewer, who is a certified tax preparer, will schedule a call with you to review and confirm the information on your tax return.
  5. After the Quality Review, you will be asked to sign an authorization to file your tax return so it can be electronically filed. You will then receive an email with the link to your completed tax return.

Other Resources for Onsite Tax Help

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Sites Near You

If you can’t find a convenient site near you, there are additional Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites that offer free tax preparation assistance. Just call the VITA Site Locator Hotline at (800) 906-9887 or use the VITA Site Locator Tool to locate your nearest VITA site and find hours of operation and contact numbers.

AARP Foundation Tax-Aide

The AARP Foundation Tax-Aide is providing in-person and virtual tax preparation services at no charge to taxpayers with low and moderate income, especially those who are age 60 or older. For more information, visit https://taxaide.aarpfoundation.org. (Make sure you read the section that explains what documents you need to have your taxes prepared.) You can also call AARP at (888) 687-2277 to find a site near you.

 

For More Information, Including Free Tax Preparation Sites

For National Benefit Fund and Greater New York Benefit Fund Members

(In English, en español)
Tax Preparation Sites: Long Island | New Jersey | Westchester

For Home Care Members

Regardless of your status, all Home Care members are eligible to receive free tax preparation assistance—even if you don’t receive health benefits.
(In English, en español, На русском языке, nan lang Kreyòl, 中文)
Tax Preparation Sites: Long Island | New Jersey | Westchester

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