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600 E. Boulevard Ave.
  Bismarck, ND 58505-0599
  701.328.7088 phone
  701.328.3700 fax
  877.328.7088 toll-free
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Beth Boustead, Public Information Specialist, 701.328.3039
Monday, April 1, 2013

Free Tax Return Preparation Help

BISMARCK, N.D. Tax Commissioner Cory Fong is encouraging taxpayers to use the free income tax preparation and filing help provided by local Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) and Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites.

"The sites are staffed by highly trained volunteers," said Fong, "who are knowledgeable about the different federal and state forms, credits, and other deductions that taxpayers might otherwise miss."

The IRS, AARP, and various other organizations partner together to provide free tax assistance, including return preparation and filing services. The tax help sites are staffed by volunteers who are trained and certified by the IRS. The volunteers who provide tax counseling and preparation of income tax returns are usually retired individuals, accountants and other professionals. The volunteers are familiar with the tax laws and regulations in place and they receive additional training every year.

"Tax time can be a stressful time for some people," said Fong. "These sites are a great resource for local communities by offering to help taxpayers at no charge." The sites are located in various community centers, public libraries, and other public locations.

The IRS and AARP sponsor the TCE program. There are no income or age limitations for taxpayers who want to use a TCE site. TCE sites provide free services for all individuals. The free Tax-Aide counseling programs are located at 11 sites in North Dakota.

"Taxpayers do not need to be members of AARP to use the free TCE tax preparation services," said Fong. "These free services are available to all taxpayers regardless of age, income, or AARP membership."

The IRS also sponsors the VITA program, which offers free tax help for taxpayers whose income is $51,000 or less. The program is available to qualified individuals who file basic tax returns. There are 21 VITA sites in different communities in North Dakota.

For more information about the North Dakota VITA and TCE programs or for a listing of the free tax preparation locations, visit the Tax Department's web site at www.nd.gov/tax or follow the Tax Department on Facebook and YouTube.

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