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MCC Offers Free Tax Preparation Help at Three Locations

[Monday, January 9, 2017]

McHenry County College is hosting free tax assistance and e-filing of federal and state returns for those who qualify, from Jan. 21 through April 17 with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Clinic. The clinic is closed on March 25-30.

Walk-in hours are from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays and 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Wednesdays in Room A102 at the college, located at 8900 U.S. Hwy. 14 in Crystal Lake.

Additional tax assistance clinic locations are in Harvard and Woodstock. The Harvard tax clinic is located in the Board Room at the Harvard School Administration Building, 401 N. Division Street from 5:30-8:30 p.m. on Mondays. The Woodstock tax clinic is located at the McHenry County Workforce Center, 500 Russel Court in Woodstock from 1-4 p.m. on Thursdays from Feb. 2 through March 23 (a shorter season).

The VITA Clinic prepares tax returns for individuals or households with incomes less than $55,000 and Facilitated Self Assistance (FSA) returns with incomes less than $60,000.

All tax forms will be provided. Participants should bring the following: valid photo ID for main taxpayer on tax return, Social Security cards or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) letters for all family members reported on the tax return (mandatory), all 2016 earnings statements (W2s) and other income/expense documents, copy of last year’s return, if available, and bank account information for direct deposits.

Other documents to bring, if pertinent, are: tuition statements and expenses (1098-T), mortgage interest statements (1098), real estate tax bill, and cancellation of debt/bankruptcy information.

Additional services include opening up checking and savings accounts in order to get the direct deposit refund in 10 days and financial aid assistance and helping individuals apply for their Individual Tax Identification Numbers (ITINs). Trained staff will help individuals complete the Federal Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form with the completion of the tax return.

According to new IRS requirements, Individual Taxpayer Identification Numbers (ITIN) issued before 2013 will begin expiring this year, starting with those with middle digits of 78 and 79. These taxpayers will need to renew their ITIN. Additionally, the new law requires that all ITINS that have not been used on a federal tax return at least once in the last three years will no longer be valid for use on a tax return; all of these ITIN holders must reapply.

Tax returns filed with expired ITINS will be accepted, but not processed until the ITIN is renewed. If expired ITIN is not renewed, any exemptions and credits associated with it will be disallowed.

ITINS can be renewed without a tax return. There is an expected 7-9 week processing of ITIN applications. For example, if submitted on January 1, 2017, an ITIN assigned letter may not be received until the first week of March.

For more information contact Ann Esarco at (847) 260-VITA or send an email to


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