Tax returns

Free income tax preparation and e-filing services will return to Green Valley on Tuesday.

Volunteers from the AARP Tax-Aide program have partnered with the other IRS free tax service, VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance). Both programs utilize tax counselors trained and certified by the IRS, and both programs follow similar guidelines.

The new VITA volunteers changed organizations because the AARP program was suspended nationwide in March because of coronavirs, and it may not reopen

for the remainder of the tax filing season. The IRS and Arizona filing deadline is July 15.

That deadline is only a factor for taxpayers who will owe money to the federal or state governments. Otherwise, tax filers legally have up to three years to submit 2019 tax returns.

Two new tax sites are in the Continental Shopping Plaza and at Valley Assistance Services on Camino Del Heroe near the Santa Rita Springs rec center.

The Continental site will operate Tuesday afternoons and Thursday mornings. The Valley Assistance site will operate Wednesdays, beginning June 3, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The procedures

All clients must call for an appointment; walk-ins will not be permitted. Directions to the appropriate site will be provided when an appointment is made. Clients will drop off their tax paperwork at the site and leave. A counselor will review their tax documents and prepare the client’s federal and state tax returns. The completed returns and tax documents will be reviewed by a second counselor for completeness and accuracy. If either counselor has a question about any of the client’s tax documents, they will call the client and resolve the issue over the phone.

If the problem is too complex to resolve over the phone, the counselor will arrange a face to face visit with the client at the tax site. Once the tax returns are complete, they will be printed and the client will be notified.

The client(s) will return to the tax site to review the finished tax returns and sign the form that authorizes e-filing. They request clients use their own pens for document signing. The tax process is designed to take just one day, but some returns may be started one day and completed another day.

Clients and volunteers will all wear face masks or face shields when interacting with each other.

Clients who show up to drop off their tax documents will be requested to remain at least six feet from other clients or volunteers. Volunteers will wash or sanitize their hands after handling each client’s paperwork. Clients and volunteers will be questioned about their health when they arrive. Anyone who has been sick or doesn’t feel well will be asked to leave the tax site until they are feeling better.

The sites are not equipped to provide face masks or gloves.

The three Green Valley tax preparation sites that AARP counselors used in the past remain closed due to Covid-19 health concerns. If any of the AARP sites become available before July 15, AARP tax services may be resumed.

Make an appointment

To make an appointment, or to request additional information about the VITA tax preparation service, please contact Mark Haskoe at 520-300-6407. For just information about the tax program, contact Pat Murphy at 520-460-2011.