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United Way offering free tax preparation
Elizabeth Waters
United Way of the Coastal Empire, Effingham Area Director Elizabeth Waters - photo by Mark Lastinger/staff

Tax season is here but that doesn’t mean getting your taxes done has to be complicated, and it also doesn’t have to be expensive.

Over the past nine years, United Way of the Coastal Empire, Effingham County has partnered with Neighborhood Improvement Association to offer free federal and state income tax preparations to hardworking individuals and families by simplifying the tax filing process and helping them claim important tax credits through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program.

Starting Monday, residents can drop off their tax paperwork at the United Way’s Effingham County Office in Rincon and IRS-certified volunteers will complete their tax return. 

Last year, VITA volunteers prepared over 350 tax returns for Effingham residents that resulted in more than $431,000 in total refunds.

Elizabeth Waters, director of United Way, stated that this year’s goal is to complete 400 personal tax returns for Effingham County residents.

“We are excited to see this free service grow in our community and look forward to what the future holds,” she said.

The VITA program offers free tax assistance to individuals who generally make $56,000 or less; persons with disabilities and limited English-speaking taxpayers who need assistance preparing their own returns. There is some flexibility with these qualifications so feel free to reach out to Neighborhood Improvement Association by visiting or calling 912-447-5577 for any additional information.