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OCU students provide free tax prep services

Oklahoma City University students have generated almost $54,000 in federal refunds and $10,000 in state refunds for local residents so far during this year’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program.

Those who qualify for assistance may drop by the VITA offices in OCU’s Meinders School of Business, N.W. 27th Street and McKinley Avenue. Appointments are not required and office hours are 2 to 6 p.m. Mondays and 1 to 4 p.m. Thursdays through April 17, the day before the tax filing deadline. The VITA offices are on the second floor in the south wing of the building. Call 405-208-6048 for more info.

Students from the Meinders School of Business have partnered with the IRS to offer the program, which provides free state and federal tax return preparation and efiling. The assistance is offered to those who have a simple tax return (i.e., no rental income or expenses, no depreciation schedules, etc.). The volunteers can also prepare prior year and amended tax returns.

“This is a service that fits our theme of servant leadership at Oklahoma City University,” said Robin Walker, accounting professor and faculty mentor for the VITA program. “This is also a way to help the community and give students real working experience in a professional environment with clients.”

A list of forms to bring is available on the IRS website, irs.gov. To prepare a return, volunteers will need a client’s Social Security card, driver’s license, W2s, 1099s, Social Security statements, unemployment statements, interest and dividend statements from banks, mortgage statements, receipts for real estate taxes paid, statements of charitable contributions, receipt for day care expenses including the name, address or employer ID number of the child care provider, receipts for education expenses or Form 1098-T from a college or university and Social Security cards and dates of birth for every person on the tax return. Those who purchased a new car or home in 2022 should bring information with them about the purchase price and taxes paid. Additionally, anyone claiming children who do not live with them on their tax return must bring an IRS or court document giving them permission for the claim.

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