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PNS Daily Newscast - September 25, 2018 


The list of accusers against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh continues to swell. Also on the Tuesday rundown: Hurricane Florence SNAPs North Carolina to attention on the importance of food benefits; plus a new report says young parents need better supports.

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Hoosiers Missing Out on Thousands of Dollars

The average Earned Income Tax Credit refund in 2014 was $2,400, but one in five tax filers aren't aware they're eligible for it. (Veronica Carter)
The average Earned Income Tax Credit refund in 2014 was $2,400, but one in five tax filers aren't aware they're eligible for it. (Veronica Carter)
January 29, 2016

INDIANAPOLIS - Not many want to be reminded, but tax day is coming. Those who are getting money back from Uncle Sam this year probably already are getting their papers in order to file so they can get their refunds as early as possible.

If you run into trouble, help is available. Lucinda Nord, vice president for public policy at the Indiana Association of United Ways, said volunteers trained and certified by the Internal Revenue Service have set up free preparation sites throughout the state. They're trying to educate everyone about the Earned Income Tax Credit, which helps lower-wage working families keep more of what they earn.

"People can make up to about $50,000 a year depending on their family size and their situation," she said, "and what we know about the EITC is that about one in five who are eligible don't claim it."

Volunteers have completed approximately 40,000 tax returns and helped return millions of the $1.3 billion returned to 558,000 Hoosiers and local communities. To qualify, taxpayers must file as individuals or married filing jointly. If married, you, your spouse and your qualifying children must have valid Social Security numbers. You also must be 25 or older but younger than 65. Nord said experts are available to help.

"Individuals who want help with their taxes can go to a free tax-preparation site or can go to myfreetaxes.com," she said, "and if they're not sure where to go, they can call 211 to find a free tax-prep site near them."

A single person who earned less than $14,800 last year qualifies for the EITC. Low-income seniors may qualify for the Tax Credit for the Elderly. According to United Way, the EITC encourages work, reduces poverty and leads to long-term gains in child health and academic success. For the 2014 tax year, according to the IRS, the average refund was about $2,400.

Veronica Carter, Public News Service - IN