June Story of the Month

Making a Meaningful Difference

During this recent tax season, we had the extraordinary opportunity to help Lisa. Lisa had a rollercoaster of a year filled with both joy and sorrow. She had gotten married, but then came the unthinkable. Just a few short months later, Lisa became a widow. By the time she came to us, Lisa had already paid $350 to one tax preparer and was expecting a modest refund of $400. She made the decision, before sending everything off, to come to one of our free Saturday Tax Support+ clinics to seek assurance that her taxes were handled correctly. The previous preparer had filed her and her late husband’s returns separately. But our Cal State LA’s VITA program volunteer knew that wasn’t in Lisa’s best interest and let Lisa know that legally, Lisa could file a joint return. By filing jointly Lisa found that she was eligible for a refund of $1,714!! In that moment, it wasn’t just about numbers on a form; it was about offering support and making a meaningful difference in someone’s life.

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