Tax prep costing the poor | Arkansas Blog

Monday, November 2, 2009

Tax prep costing the poor

Posted By on Mon, Nov 2, 2009 at 1:29 PM

Arkansas Advocates for Children and Family released a report today that said ignorance of the federal earned income tax credit and triple-digit interest rapid refunds charged by tax return preparers are costing the state’s low income population $200 million a year.

AACF says one in four eligible taxpayers aren’t claiming the EITC tax credit, so they’re losing between $88.5 million and $110 million a year.

Rapid refund (RALS) loans – which were initiated before electronic filing made for speedy refunds – are instant loans tax preparers give tax filers based on expected refunds. AACF says low-income filers paid $21.6 million on these loans in 2006 and another $77 million in tax prep fees.

These loans cost filers an average $100 to get money they’d receive in days anyway by filing tax returns electronically. These loans take advantagthe poorest Arkansans: Three of four EITC tax filers who used private tax preparation firms were sold the rapid refunds.

Low income tax filers need not pay tax prep fees or take out such loans. The AACF says
the IRS free tax preparation sites and Volunteer Income Tax Assistant (VITA) sites across Arkansas could be saving the state’s poorest millions. AACF recommends expanding the number of VITA sites and passage of a new law that would end deceptive RALS loan sales.

Sign up for the Daily Update email

Comments (4)

Showing 1-4 of 4

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-4 of 4

Add a comment

More by Leslie Newell Peacock

  • Satia Spencer & Friends at Wildwood

    Elephantom at Stickyz and other things to do.
    • Jul 19, 2018
  • A deeper dive into a wider 30

    A look at ARDOT's environmental report.
    • Jul 18, 2018
  • UAMS restarts cardiac surgery program

    The University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, which had to suspend its cardiac surgical care in May when its heart surgeon, Dr. Gareth Tobler, retired before a new hire had been made, has resumed its program.
    • Jul 13, 2018
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Former Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel applauds Trump's EPA choice of climate change denier Scott Pruitt

    Dustin McDaniel gives the thumbs up to a man set to dismantle EPA regulations.
    • Dec 8, 2016
  • Women's March planned in Arkansas to mark Trump inauguration

    Speaking of Donald Trump and in answer to a reader's question: There will be a women's march in Arkansas on Jan. 21, the day after inauguration, as well as the national march planned in Washington.
    • Dec 30, 2016
  • Trump immigration protest at LR: Quick and fierce

    It was not even 24 hours ago that Sophia Said, director of the Interfaith Center; City Director Kathy Webb and others decided to organize a protest today of Donald Trump's executive order that has left people from Muslim countries languishing in airports or unable to come to the US at all — people with visas, green cards,a  post-doc graduate student en route to Harvard, Google employees abroad, families. I got the message today before noon; others didn't find out until it was going on. But however folks found out, they turned out in huge numbers, more than thousand men, women and children, on the grounds of the state Capitol to listen to speakers from all faiths and many countries.
    • Jan 29, 2017

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments



© 2018 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation