Something borrowed. Something due: A VITA(L) service at tax time takes on new importance

Credit union volunteers encounter refund shock from some as the new withholding regime presents an opportunity to rethink how cooperatives can help at tax time and year round.

The VITA volunteers at ACMG Federal Credit Union($62.1M, Solvay, NY) saw close up the angst that’s been reported around the country this year as some taxpayers realize they’re not getting the tax refund they expected.

“Some were quite upset,” says Wendy Wheelock, director of marketing. “‘This is crazy,’ they told us.”

ACMG trained students from Syracuse University to be volunteer tax return preparers, and the group assisted 168 taxpayers during two sessions in February.

Further south, UVA Community Credit Union($954.2M, Charlottesville, VA), has prepared more than 525 returns so far this year across its six branches where staff volunteers provide the service on weekdays and Saturday mornings.

 

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