2011-02-12 / Editorials & Letters

EITC benefits low, moderate income taxpayers

Editor:

Last year, approximately 23,300 low to moderate income taxpayers in Fairfield, Licking and Perry Counties claimed and received the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). As a result, more than $23.2 million in EITC money – an average of more than $2,050 per taxpayer -- came back to county residents, to be saved or spent as each recipient saw fit.

The IRS estimates that about 80 percent of those who qualify for EITC apply for and receive it, but many miss out because they fail to claim their EITC. So, the IRS is reaching out to potentially qualifying taxpayers to educate them about the credit and motivate them to file and claim it.

People who earned $48,362 or less from wages, self-employment or farming in 2010 should check to see if they qualify. Workers who may qualify for EITC include those who live in rural areas, those who are self-employed, those who receive certain disability pensions or have children with disabilities, those who are not proficient in English, those who are grandparents raising their grandchildren, and those who are recently divorced, unemployed, or have experienced other status changes.

This year, the EITC benefit peaks at $5,666. The EITC Assistant tool on www.irs.gov can help determine EITC eligibility and filing status, as well as estimate the amount of credit due. IRS Taxpayer Assistant Centers and Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites can also help taxpayers who potentially qualify for EITC . EITC – if you earned it, file, claim it and get it.

Jennifer Jenkins
IRS Media Relations for Ohio

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