Free Tax Preparation Assistance

United Way has provided free tax preparation assistance to local residents since 2007 through The Ohio Benefit Bank, a web-based program which can be accessed with the help of a trained tax volunteer or through a self-serve website.  Appointments for tax year 2015 began in mid-January and at the end of tax season (April 18,2016) 522 returns were completed resulting in $839,674 in Federal refunds and $83,386 in Ohio State refunds.  Contact Us or call United Way at 740.397.5721 if you still need assistance completing your taxes for free!  We are able to complete back taxes as well!

The program's goal is to increase the financial stability of Knox County residents.  Millions of dollars in tax credits, such as the Earned Income Credit, go unclaimed by Knox County residents each year, resulting in a loss of free federal money for the local economy.  This is money that can then be used to purchase necessities and boost savings for low and moderate-income families.  By offering Free Tax Preparation Assistance clients also save from paying costly tax preparation fees. In tax year 2015, based on an average cost of $200, United Way staff and volunteers saved filers $110,400 in tax preparation fees.

Tax volunteers receive training and  provide one-on-one assistance.  Federal and state returns can be e-filed (both must be present to sign if married filing jointly) and direct deposit is available for refunds.

File Your Taxes for Free:

Check out  Benefit Bank Software Limitations to see if you qualify for free tax preparation assistance.

For a counselor assisted appointment, Contact Us or call United Way at 740.397.5721

Go to The Ohio Benefit Bank Free Self-Serve Site to file your taxes online.

Basic information to bring to your appointment:

  • Login/password card if you are returning from a previous year
  • Home address and phone number   (All addresses in 2016 if you have moved anytime in 2016).
  • Social Security or Individual Tax Identification numbers for you, spouse, former spouse and all dependents (as applicable)
  • Birth dates for you, spouse, former spouse and all dependents (as applicable)
  • Routing and bank account numbers for direct deposit
  • Agreement or court order showing who can claim dependents if divorced or separated
  • All income forms (W-2, 1099’s, etc.)
  • Expense records for child care expenses including providers address and Social Security number or Employer Identification Number (EIN) (as applicable)
  • Total expenses if self-employed
  • Total itemized expenses if you are planning on itemizing your deductions
  • Form 1095-A - if you or anyone in your household received health insurance from The Marketplace in 2016