volunteer income tax assistance

The MAAC Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program helps low-income families prepare their tax returns at no cost. This access to Free Tax Assistance can be crucial for low-income families: the average tax return may cost about $200 with a paid tax preparer, and for a family barely making ends meet, that could mean the difference between groceries for the week or not. For the 2019 tax year, MAAC assisted 133 households, which translates into $26,600 of cost savings for low-income filers and $309,092 refunded to low-income families.

Who qualifies?

If your income was less than $66,000, you may be eligible to have one of our IRS-certified volunteers prepare your income tax returns, or

If your income was less than $57,000, you can use tax filing software at one of our kiosks or from anywhere you choose at no cost.

This year, our Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program is offering three types of services:

  • Modified “In-Person” Clinics*. Our certified IRS volunteer will prepare simple tax returns at one of our three locations:
    • Barrio Logan: Mondays from 9 am to 2:30 pm
    • Carlsbad: Tuesdays from 9 am to 2:30 pm
    • Spring Valley: Wednesdays 9 am to 2:30 pm

*Appointments are required, Walk-ins cannot be accommodated.

Please call (619) 426-3595 to schedule an appointment.

  • Self-Service Kiosk (Facilitated Self-Assistance)*. Taxpayers will prepare their tax returns on a computer (kiosk) at one of our three locations: Barrio Logan, Carlsbad, and Spring Valley using free tax preparation software*. An IRS certified volunteer will be available to answer tax law questions. Please be mindful this does NOT mean a tax preparer will do your taxes.

*Appointments are required, Walk-ins cannot be accommodated.
Please call (619) 426-3595 to schedule an appointment.

  • Remote VITA. Taxpayers can use MyFreeTaxes to prepare their taxes from anywhere: your phone, tablet, or laptop. United Way partners with TaxSlayer to provide TaxSlayer tax filing software** to help you to prepare your tax returns easily and accurately. Ready to start filing your taxes from the comfort of your home, click on this link: https://www.myfreetaxes.com/

**Your income must have been less than $57,000 to use the software at no cost on your own. Visit the website for more information.

The MyFreeTaxes.com Help Line support will be available:

  • By Phone: 866-698-9435
  • Support hours: 10:00 AM – 10:00 PM (ET), seven days per week

What to Bring:

  • Proof of identification for yourself and, if married, your spouse
  • Both you and your spouse must be present
  • Social Security cards or individual taxpayer identification notices
    for all listed on the return
  • Birthdates for you, your spouse, and/or any dependents
    on the return
  • All W-2, 1099, and 1098 forms
  • Deduction and credit information
  • Total daycare expenses and provider’s EIN (if applicable)
  • Health insurance documents: 1095-A, 1095-B or 1095-C
    (if applicable)
  • A copy of last’s year tax return
  • Direct deposit information (voided check)
Simple tax situations covered in our VITA program include:
  • W-2 income
  • Limited interest and dividend income reported on a 1099-INT or 1099-DIV
  • Retirement income
  • Student education expenses
  • Unemployment income
  • Student education credits
  • Student loan interest
  • Claiming the standard deduction
  • Earned Income Tax Credit (EIC)
  • Child tax credits
  • Child and dependent care expenses