Citi Marks National Earned Income Tax Credit Awareness Day with Release of Money Matters
Publication Encourages Taxpayers to Claim Billions in Available EITC Benefits and Provides Valuable Information on Free VITA Tax Prep Sites
New York, January 31, 2014 /3BL Media/ – As part of the eighth annual National Earned Income Tax (EITC) Awareness Day, Citi today released Money Matters, a market-specific publication appearing in 10 states across the United States that encourages working taxpayers to take advantage of refunds available through the federal EITC program. In 2013, $67 billion in EITC credits were distributed to millions of Americans, but many eligible taxpayers still do not claim the benefit.
In his State of the Union address this week, President Obama highlighted the EITC for its effectiveness in bolstering the finances of working families with low- and moderate-incomes. For instance, eligible families with three or more qualifying children may receive up to $6,044 simply by claiming the benefit.
Citi Community Development created the third annual edition of Money Matters to help connect eligible taxpayers with local community organizations that provide or promote free tax assistance through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Money Matters includes essential information about the VITA program and the EITC; wise ways to save money; tips for stress-free tax filing; and the benefits of having a bank account. The resource is available in English and Spanish at www.on.citi.us/EITC14.
“Last year, more than 27 million Americans received an average EITC benefit of $2,300, putting money directly into the pockets of working families,” said Bob Annibale, Global Director of Citi Community Development. “But each year, 20 percent of eligible taxpayers still do not file for the EITC, leaving billions of dollars unclaimed. The Money Matters campaign demonstrates Citi’s continued and shared commitment with our community partners to provide the support and resources eligible families need to reclaim money that can really make a difference.”
Bridgeport, Connecticut, is among the cities participating in the Money Matters campaign. In 2013, 211,000 Connecticut residents who claimed the EITC received an average of $2,075 when filing their taxes.
“VITA and EITC are critical services that empower the hard working families of Bridgeport to receive all of the tax refunds that they’ve earned,” said Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch. “The money earned from these tax refunds gives our residents much needed assistance with bills, groceries, school supplies, and other expenses. I am urging all residents who qualify to please take advantage of these programs.”
About the Earned Income Tax Credit
The EITC enables working people who earn approximately $50,000 or less per year to keep more of their earnings through a tax refund. The IRS estimates that four out of five eligible people claim and receive the EITC. However, many people, including millions of eligible workers who qualified for the EITC for the first time in 2013, may not know about the credit or that they must file an income tax return in order to claim the benefit. To sign-up for the program, visit http://1.usa.gov/1bXXK2Z.
About the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program
The VITA program generally offers free tax help to people who make $51,000 or less and need assistance in preparing their own tax returns. IRS-certified volunteers provide free basic income tax return preparation with electronic filing to qualified individuals in local communities, and can inform taxpayers about special tax credits for which they may qualify, including the EITC. VITA sites are generally located at community and neighborhood centers, libraries, schools, shopping malls, and other convenient locations. Additional information on VITA is available at www.irs.gov.
Customized editions of Money Matters will be available for taxpayers in the following markets:
- New York
- South Dakota
- Washington, D.C.
Citi Community Development is leading Citi’s commitment to achieve economic empowerment and growth for underserved individuals, families and communities by expanding access to financial products and services, and building sustainable business solutions and innovative partnerships. Our focus areas include: commercial and philanthropic funding; innovative financial products and services; and collaborations with institutions that expand access to financial products and services for low-income and underserved communities. For more information, please visit www.citicommunitydevelopment.com.
Citi, the leading global bank, has approximately 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 160 countries and jurisdictions. Citi provides consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of financial products and services, including consumer banking and credit, corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, transaction services, and wealth management.
Additional information may be found at www.citigroup.com | Twitter: @Citi | YouTube: www.youtube.com/citi | Blog: http://blog.citigroup.com | Facebook: www.facebook.com/citi | LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/citi