Community Teamwork Offers Tax Assistance for Families

CTI offers free tax help for families

By Jennifer Myers, jmyers@lowellsun.com

Updated: 02/04/2010 06:35:42 AM EST
}LOWELL — Filling out tax forms can be complicated. Having someone do it for you can get pricey.

Community Teamwork Inc. is again prepared to help low-income individuals and families file their tax returns at no charge.

“Some of the fees are outrageous out there,” said Gail Fortes of CTI. “If it wasn’t for services like this, some people wouldn’t bother to file their taxes.”

Additionally, Fortes said several people are eligible for deductions they are not aware off or may be eligible for the earned-income tax credit, which increases the amount of their tax return, putting money back in their pockets.

“Some people walk away with a couple of thousand dollars and can then fix their cars or pay their heating bills,” she said.

Last year, CTI’s program, which partners with Casey Family Services, the Lowell Senior Center and UMass Lowell, filed taxes for 390 people. The clients, in addition to having their taxes taken care of, also receive financial counseling and are linked to other community services they may need.

CTI coordinates a team of local volunteers, training them to become tax preparers. They have also teamed up with UMass Lowell’s Center for Family, Work and Community, which provides student volunteers and support.

For more information, call Gail Fortes at 978-654-5080, ext. 24, or e-mail her at gfortes@comteam.org.

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