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Tax man cometh: Free help available to all

By Stephanie Carson • Updated Feb 6, 2018 at 2:00 PM

NASHVILLE – It’s a good time to start collecting what’s needed to settle up with Uncle Sam. 

Tax forms are arriving in mailboxes daily across Tennessee, and that means it’s tax time.

For people overwhelmed by the task, there is free help available for people of all ages and all income levels. The AARP Foundation Tax-Aide Program – in its 50th year – is underway, and state coordinator Pamela Holcombe said it offers an army of volunteers across the state to help where computer programs may fail.

“There are some nuances, some things that people can take advantage of that they might not be aware of,” she said. “Expenses that they can deduct, and some things that they can’t, that they may think they can. It just helps to keep from having an issue with the IRS.”

The recently passed tax law changes will not impact 2017 returns. Find the nearest tax-aide center at aarp.org/findtaxhelp or call 888-227-7669. In Wilson County, tax aide centers may be found at the Lebanon-Wilson County Public Library in Lebanon and Victory Baptist Church in Mt. Juliet, and visits are by appointment only.

Holcombe said it’s important to bring the original Social Security card for everyone filing on a return, photo identifications and all tax documents. She said a good way to make sure a form is not forgotten to complete taxes is to pull out last year’s file.

“We can’t finish a return unless we have all of that. The best way to find that out is to look at last year’s return and see how many W-2s they had and how many 1099s they had, and make sure they have all of those unless they closed an account or quit a job,” said Holcombe.

All AARP tax-aide volunteers are certified by the IRS and AARP and are trained annually to be aware of any new changes to the tax law.

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