For Immediate Release - January 27, 2012

Grossman Urges Broader Use of the Earned Income Tax Credit

Under-Use of Benefit Denies Households Millions of Dollars Each Year

Citing an underutilization of the federal Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), Treasurer Steven Grossman today joined the Worcester Community Action Council to promote awareness of the substantial benefits the program can bring to low to moderate-income families throughout Massachusetts.

“Empowering more people through financial education programs is one of my top goals as Treasurer,” said Grossman.  “Highlighting the benefits of this substantial – but often overlooked – federal tax credit can give people the resources they need to achieve and sustain financial stability now, and throughout their lives.”

The EITC is a refundable federal tax program that can reduce the amount of income tax owed by low to moderate-income working families and individuals.  Under the guidelines of the program for the latest tax year:

  • Families with one child who earn less than $41,132 are eligible for up to $3558
  • Families with two children who earn less than $46,044 are eligible for up to $5,879
  • Families with three-plus children who earn less than $49,078 are eligible for up to $6,614
  • Workers without children who earn less than $18,740 are eligible for up to $534

Grossman also praised the work of the Worcester Community Action Council for its work as a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) provider.  Last year, the Worcester-area VITA alone prepared over 1,500 tax returns, with a total of $2.4 million returned to the community, in part due to leveraging the benefits of the Earned Income Tax Credit.  Numerous VITAs across the Commonwealth offer free tax preparation, advice, and electronic filing services to low to moderate-income individuals and families.  For a full list of VITAs statewide, interested parties can call (800)906-9887.

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the EITC lifts more families out of poverty than any other federal aid program, providing them with an opportunity to increase savings, reduce debt, and finance education and training programs.



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