FREE TAX CLINICS
Tri-CAP has set up free Tax Clinics to help lower-income individuals and families prepare their taxes. If you are an individual and make $30,000 or less or a family making $50,000 or less, let us help you prepare your taxes. Our walk-in sites are staffed by certified volunteers who offer free electronic filing. The clinics are especially targeted on helping individuals take advantage of SPECIAL TAX CREDITS such as:
· Federal Earned Income Tax Credit
· Federal Child Tax Credit
· Federal and Minnesota Child and Dependent Care Credit
· Federal American Opportunity Tax Credit, Hope Scholarship Credit & Lifetime Learning Credit
· Minnesota K-12 Education Credit and K-12 Education Subtraction Credit
· Minnesota Property (renters included) Tax refund
Many low-income workers fail to file for and claim substantial refunds which can average over $1,000 per family. Our free Tax Clinics also eliminate the need for predatory "rapid refund advance loans" that many commercial tax preparation services advise individuals to take.
Using our free Tax Clinics, it generally takes about 5-7 days for your state refund and 9-15 days for your federal refund to be electronically deposited into your bank account.
New this year: We are making available a no-fee debit card for our Tax Clinic customers. The card can be activated (for free) right at the tax site, and the taxpayer's refund can be directly deposited into it. The card can be used just like any other debit card. This is a great deal for un-banked customers.
If you are interested in this program as a service or as a potential volunteer please contact: Tri-CAP @ 320-251-1612.
What to Bring to a Tax Site: Individuals and Families
Here is a list of what you need to bring with you:
- Prior year’s tax return
- Valid picture I.D.
- For each person listed on the tax return, bring birth date and one of the following: Social Security card or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) card or letter
- For direct deposit of your refund, bring a voided check or your savings account and bank routing information
Income statements or forms:
- Wages from each job (Form W-2)
- Interest (Form 1099-INT)
- Dividends (Form 1099-DIV)
- Retirement Plans( Form 1099-R)
- Gambling Winnings (Form W-2G)
- Unemployment (Form 1099-G)
- Social Security Benefits (Form SSA)
If applicable also bring:
- Year-end income statements for MFIP, SSDI, SSI, MSA, GA, veterans’ benefits, and workers’ compensation.
- Receipts for education expenses you paid for your children in grades K-12; for example: tutoring, rental/purchase of musical instrument, music lessons, pencils, notebooks, etc.
- Tuition expenses you paid to attend a university/technical college (Form 1098-T); for higher education credit, bring records of the books and other supplies required for the course(s) taken
- Interest you paid on student loans (1098-E)
- Daycare expenses you paid for your children. Bring provider’s name, address and tax ID or social security number.
- Charitable donations records -- cash and non-cash
- Homeowners: Mortgage interest and real estate taxes paid (Form 1098) and Statement of Property Tax Payable mailed to you by the county in March. (Mobile home owners receive their statements in June.)
- Renters: Certificate of Rent Paid (CRP) from your landlord
Getting Refunds for School Supplies
Depending on your income and eligibility, you may be able to receive credit for up to 75% of your actual expenses on qualifying educational supplies and fees. In order to claim this credit at tax time, you must have records (such as receipts or cancelled checks) for expenses.
A few examples of qualifying expenses include:
- Pens, pencils, notebooks, folders, etc.
- Instructors' fees for after-school programs and summer educational programs
- Music lessons
- Computer hardware or education software
Who qualifies for the added school supply credit?
Families with one-to-two (1-2) children in grades K-12 and income less than $37,500
Families with three (3) children in grades K-12 and income less than $39,500
Families with four (4) children in grades K-12 and income less than $41,500
Families with five (5) children in grades K-12 and income less than $43,500
Families with six (6) children in grades K-12 and income less than $43,500; add $2,000 for each additional child
For more information contact us
If you are interested in volunteering please click here.