Volunteer Tax Preparer – Year Three
Veteran readers may recall that for the past two years, I have worked during tax season as a volunteer tax preparer at a local senior citizens center. I work with an IRS sanctioned program called VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) and TCE (Tax Counseling for the Elderly). The AARP is the actual organizer and sponsor of our local program, called TAX-AIDE. For more about these programs, read this earlier post.
Most of the VITA volunteers are already retired. I am not so I have never had time to attend any of the yearly training classes. I learn by reading the training materials published specifically for VITA volunteers and practicing preparing returns using fake taxpayers. This year the program has moved from a locally installed PC software application to a web-based system, which I like.
Last night and early this morning I finally completed the three certification exams (basic, intermediate, and advanced) that all of our volunteers must pass yearly. Now I am ready to schedule myself for appointments at the senior center, which will probably start next week. I am looking forward to it and hope to see again some of the taxpayers that I worked with in prior years.
The past two years I have written posts that discuss my experiences preparing returns and talking to the taxpayers. Many readers seem to have enjoyed reading them, almost as much as I have enjoyed writing them. I intend to write similar posts this season as well, so please stay tuned for those.