For Seven Months, We Made Preparing 1040s Look EZ
After logging more than 35,000 hours over nearly seven months, completing thousands of forms, getting props from the governor and a City of Seattle councilperson, crunching an endless stream of numbers, and giving undivided personal attention to thousands of clients, United Way of King County is finally done doing taxes this season.
From early January to late July, our Free Tax Preparation Campaign provided services at 17 sites across the region, helping scores of people secure refunds of their hard-earned money that they otherwise might not have obtained—or at least not for free.
Our Free Tax Prep campaign just completed its 20th year as part of United Way’s service to communities. With our partners at the IRS and the City of Seattle, United Way’s Free Tax Preparation Campaign helps people making $80,000 or less take advantage of earned income tax credits, the nation’s most vital anti-poverty measure.
Here are the final numbers from this year’s campaign:
- We prepared more than 9,700 tax returns
- We served more than 13,900 clients and their dependents
- We helped clients claim more than $13 million in state and federal tax credits and refunds
- We saved clients an estimated $2.5 million in total tax prep costs
Ryan McFerran, United Way program manager for tax credits and financial stability, said that this year a tax client with an average annual income of about $33,000, claimed 7% of yearly earnings in state and federal tax credits and refunds by visiting a United Way Free Tax Prep site.
That amount, McFerran said, translates to about three and a half additional weeks of pay or a $1.00/hr. raise for single-income households.
United Way thanks all our volunteers and sponsors who made this year’s campaign a success. We’d also like to thank both Governor Jay Inslee and former Seattle City Councilwoman Teresa Mosqueda for showing up at our tax sites and helping us spread the word. And thanks to the thousands of clients who entrusted us to provide you with top-notch service as we did our best to secure refunds.
If you didn’t give our services a try this year, please consider us next year! To learn more about the campaign, click here.
Also being a tax volunteer is easy, fun, and makes an immediate impact in helping our neighbors thrive. United Way will begin recruiting volunteers for the upcoming tax season in October. Click here to sign up for updates.