Lorain county helps area hispanics
April 11, 2010 · Print This Article
The Lorain County community received free tax filing assistance April 10 at the St. Joseph Community Center in Lorain thanks to a collaborative effort with the Internal Revenue Service and local non profit organizations.
Federal and state tax filing help was available to those who made $57,000 or less thanks to the Earned Income Tax program and organizations such as the United Way and the Second Harvest Food Bank. Kimberly Torrance, an Earned Income Tax Credit representative has been assisting the community with their taxes for 10 years. Her experience has led her help people from all walks of life.
“Overall because I’m in the Lorain metropolitan site I’d say I help more Black and Hispanics then others, but that may be because of the site I’m at,” Torrance said. “We have quite a bit of Hispanics, a majority of time I have a translator”
Torrance said most of the time the translator is a family member. People come in thinking they owe money, especially since there have been changes in the tax code stemming from the Obama administration.
“We get a lot of people who owe because they do not pay enough into their taxes each pay period,” said Torrance.
Whole families came in to receive assistance with their taxes. Everyone who came in filed 1040A forms and signed up for direct deposit to receive possible tax returns sooner. According to Caitlin Donnelly, project coordinator, the event was on pace to reach its goal of assisting Lorain County residents in getting back $4 million in tax returns.
According to Torrance, programs like this help the community greatly.
“The people really do need help,” she said. ”To the average Joe off the street taxes are not easy to prepare, credits are easy to miss.”
Those who are filing their 2009 taxes have the opportunity to file their 2006 taxes as well. The IRS has an estimated $1.4 billion dollars in unclaimed tax money, but to claim it, you must file this year’s taxes.