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Stacy Opitz, Prepare + Prosper

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 File Your Taxes for Free at Prepare + Prosper

Nonprofit offers free tax preparation and financial services during the 2019 tax season

St. Paul – January 17, 2019 — With tax season right around the corner and new federal tax laws to navigate, Prepare + Prosper (P+P) encourages low- and moderate-income individuals and families to file their taxes for free with an IRS-certified volunteer tax preparer to get their maximum refund and save money.

From January 26 until April 15, P+P’s IRS-certified volunteers work one-on-one with taxpayers to help them claim all the credits they’ve earned. The nonprofit also provides financial services to help people save some of their refund, get connected to financial coaching, and answer money-related questions.

“Tax time can be a significant money moment for individuals and families with low- and moderate-incomes,” said Tracy Fischman, P+P executive director. “For 48 years, we’ve been providing high-quality, free tax preparation and financial services to help people maximize their tax refund’s impact on their financial future.”

This tax season new federal tax laws take effect, and what that means for individual taxpayers depends upon their unique situation. Also new this year is a redesigned 1040 tax form and six new accompanying schedules.

Despite the government shutdown, the Internal Revenue Service has indicated it will process tax returns beginning January 28, 2019 and provide refunds to taxpayers as scheduled. Like the past two years, federal tax refunds will take longer for those receiving the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC). In mid-February, the IRS will begin processing refunds that include the EITC and ACTC, and federal refunds are expected to appear in bank accounts during the last week of February.

“Now more than ever, it’s important that people use a trusted and qualified tax preparer to help them navigate the new federal tax code, a differing Minnesota state tax code, and a new 1040 form and accompanying schedules,” said Fischman. “Prepare + Prosper is here to answer questions and remind people that a free tax preparation service is the best way to file if you qualify and that no one can speed up your refund.”

In 2018, 588 P+P volunteers prepared taxes for 12,385 taxpayers who received more than $23.9 million in refunds and, 1,319 of those taxpayers committed to saving $1.9 million of their refunds.

Who is eligible for free tax preparation?

Individuals with an annual income of $35,000 or less and families and self-employed taxpayers with an annual income of $55,000 or less in 2018 are eligible for free tax preparation.

Where are the free tax preparation sites located?

Appointment sites

  • Prepare + Prosper main office: 2610 University Avenue W., St. Paul
  • Creekside Community Center: 9801 Penn Ave. S., Bloomington
  • Minneapolis Urban League: 2100 Plymouth Avenue N., Minneapolis
  • ResourceWest, 1011 1st S., Hopkins

Walk-in sites

  • East Side Neighborhood Services: 1700 2nd NE, Minneapolis
  • Hallie Q. Brown Community Center: 270 N. Kent St., St. Paul
  • Hope Community Center: 611 E. Franklin Avenue, Minneapolis
  • Merrick Community Services : 1669 Arcade St. N., Ste. 4., St. Paul
  • Sabathani Community Center: 310 E. 38th, Minneapolis

When are tax sites open?

P+P tax sites are open at varying times January 26 through April 15. For a complete list of times or to make appointment, go to or call 651-287-0187. P+P also offers audit assistance, and the main office is open year-round.

What other services are offered at the tax site?

Taxpayers can open a savings account, purchase a U.S. savings bond, get a copy of their credit report, and signup for P+P’s free financial coaching program and FAIR financial solution. Taxpayers can also apply for an Individual Tax Identification Number (ITIN) at the P+P main office.

What languages are available?

Spanish and ASL interpreters are available at the P+P main office.

About Prepare + Prosper

A nonprofit organization, Prepare + Prosper and its volunteers work with low- to moderate-income people to build financial well-being through free tax preparation and financial services, products, and coaching, and by changing systems to create economic opportunity. In 2018, 588 volunteers prepared taxes for 12,385 taxpayers who received $23.9 million in refunds; 1,319 of those taxpayers committed to saving $1.9 million of their refunds.