imgresPikes Peak United Way will be providing free tax preparations for local families this tax season. A news release from the organization states the preparations are “an effort to help families begin a path toward financial stability.”

Pikes Peak United Way is offering Volunteer Income Tax Assistance, an IRS-sponsored program that provides tax preparation for low- to moderate-income families for no charge. The VITA program also helps those families  receive the Earned Income Tax Credit, where filers could be eligible for up to $6,200.

Families or individuals who earned less than $54,000 are eligible to get their taxes filed for free at one of six VITA sites in Colorado Springs and El Paso County.

“This program has great economic impact to our city as those residents who receive help collect more in income tax refunds that they will spend in our community,” the release states.

Last year, federal and state tax returns amounted nearly $1.9 million . Pikes Peak United Way coordinates dozens of volunteers throughout tax season to help more families receive the EITC.

Filed electronically, most refunds are returned in just 10-14 days, according to the release, which eliminates the need to pay high interest rates associated with many instant refund programs. For qualification information or to schedule an appointment, call 2-1-1 Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.