Tax season is here

SHAW AIR FORCE BASE, S.C. -- The income tax season is right around the corner. While most cherish tax time about as much as a visit to the dentist, some at Shaw really enjoy the tax assistance program. The 20th Fighter Wing legal office, along with Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) representatives, will again be providing free tax help, to include electronic filing, for active-duty members, their families and retired members of Shaw AFB.

Although the concept of federal income taxes can be intimidating to most, over 25 volunteers from all sections of the Shaw community voluntarily attended Internal Revenue Training this past December. This training insures that our volunteers have the most up-to-date IRS changes to better assist you.

These VITA volunteers will be preparing federal income taxes, free of charge, for all military identification card holders here on Shaw. Not only will they be available to assist you, the volunteers are trained on topics such as the Earned Income Credit, Additional Child Credit, various tax deductions, and other important financial aspects that may be on your mind this tax season.

The Tax Center, located in the community center (bldg 1411, across from the bowling alley) will open on Feb. 3. The Tax Center offers walk-in filing service for filers of the 1040EZ form. Anyone filing a 1040A or 1040 long form will need an appointment. You can call 895-8780 to schedule an appointment. Appointments times are from Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

There are a few important documents that the tax preparers will need in order to assist you. Some of the most common are:
· A copy of Social Security cards for taxpayer, spouse, and all dependents.
· A voided check if you desire direct deposit of your return.
· Form W-2 from each employer. Active-duty members may obtain this from www.mypay.gov
· Childcare/ Daycare expense information. You will also need name, SSN, and address of the Childcare provider.

If you have any additional sources of income, such as sales of stocks, or any other income source, supporting documentation must be provided to prepare an accurate return.
One way to decrease the waiting time is to take advantage of the Tax Center's free electronic filing program. By simply bringing a voided check to the Tax Center when you file, you can choose any checking account, regardless of location, to have your return deposited into. VITA reps can track the status of your income tax filing with a click of a button.

The Tax Center staff stands ready to assist you with all of your income tax questions and concerns. For additional information, please don't hesitate to call Mr. Lee Joyce at 895-1560 or at 895-8780 after the Tax Center opens.