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AARP Foundation Offers Free Tax Preparation to Oregonians

Nearly 46,000 Oregonians got help with their income taxes last year through the AARP Foundation Tax-Aide program. (stevepb/Pixabay)
Nearly 46,000 Oregonians got help with their income taxes last year through the AARP Foundation Tax-Aide program. (stevepb/Pixabay)
February 1, 2019

PORTLAND, Ore. – Starting today, Oregonians can get free assistance preparing their income tax returns.

For the 51st year, the AARP Foundation's Tax-Aide program is helping folks by providing the largest free tax preparation program in the country. Last year, volunteers completed nearly 46,000 forms in Oregon, with refunds of more than $48 million. That includes nearly $12 million dollars in Earned Income Tax Credits.

Kathy Goeddel is the assistant state coordinator for the Portland Metro Area, AARP Foundation Tax-Aide. Goeddel says the new tax law that went into effect in 2018 could trip people up, but volunteers are ready to help.

"All of our volunteers are IRS-certified, and we have learned all the latest forms and done practice problems, are now ready to help our clients with the latest tax-law changes," says Goeddel.

The program is open to everyone, not just seniors, and you don't have to be an AARP member. It aims especially to help lower- and middle-income folks.

It opens today at roughly 130 locations across the state, including libraries, schools and senior centers.

Goeddel says the program is satisfying for volunteers as well.

"You get to help people, either couples or one-on-one with singles and people who are head of household, and be able to provide a service that they need,” says Goeddel. “And they're grateful, and you're happy you got the chance to be able to help."

The IRS began processing income-tax returns this week. Goeddel says there haven't been any delays yet from the government shutdown that ended last week, although returns that need extra verification could take a bit longer.

Eric Tegethoff, Public News Service - OR