NEW BRITAIN - The Internal Revenue Service has announced that, despite the federal government shutdown, it will process tax returns and provide refunds to taxpayers.
The IRS will start to accept and process returns on Jan. 28. Taxpayers who have all the required documentation can begin to file before Jan. 28, then submit the returns when the IRS systems open.
“We are committed to ensuring that taxpayers receive their refunds, notwithstanding the government shutdown,” IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig said.
Some of the IRS workers furloughed due to the government shutdown will be recalled.
“IRS employees have been hard at work over the past year to implement the biggest tax-law changes the nation has seen in more than 30 years,” Rettig said.
People with an income under $66,000 can use tax preparation software through the IRS to file for free. People who would rather use a preparer and who qualify can file for free through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance and Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs.
According to Eric Smith, a spokesman for the IRS, the agency typically has more than 12,000 locations offering the VITA and TCE programs.
The Human Resources Agency of New Britain offers VITA at several locations around Central Connecticut.
“HRA operates 14 VITA centers throughout New Britain, Bristol, Farmington, Meriden, Plymouth, Southington, Vernon and Wallingford,” Caren Dickman, the HRA’s communications and grant development specialist, said.
HRA staff and more than 200 volunteers will help file the returns. All are IRS-certified.
This year marks HRA’s 15th year running the VITA program, which is funded by the IRS, the United Ways of Central and Northeast Connecticut, West Central Connecticut, Meriden and Wallingford and the American Savings Foundation.
“HRA had to push back the opening of our 35 Oak Street VITA Center from January 19 to January 22,” Juan Berrios, HRA community and financial services program manager, said.
“Based on what we know now, all 14 of our VITA tax centers will be up and running as scheduled. All of our volunteers and staff are ready to prepare and file tax returns for January 28.”
For more information, visit the IRS website at www.irs.gov or contact HRA at 860-225-8601.
Karla Santos can be reached at 860-801-5079 or firstname.lastname@example.org.