RALEIGH, N.C. (4/24/12)--State Employees' CU (SECU) tax preparers have just completed the 2012 tax season, helping nearly 65,000 North Carolina taxpayers claim more than $86 million in refunds and save in excess of $8 million in preparation fees.
Through the Internal Revenue Service Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program, SECU tax preparers filed over 57,000 member returns--a substantial increase from last year's figure of nearly 48,000.
For members whose income thresholds fall above the VITA guidelines, SECU's low-cost tax preparation services helped 7,000 tax return filers, up 30% from the nearly 5,000 served in 2011. Also, more than 26,000 credit union members took advantage of discounted TurboTax services via SECU's website.
SECU continues to actively promote its tax preparation services and ensure that members not only avoid high fees associated with tax return preparation, but are educated on various tax credits for which they qualify. The efforts also have paid off for members, with 65,000 members claiming more than $40.7 million in tax credits in 2012, including $22.7 million in Earned Income Tax Credits and more than $12 million in Child Tax Credits.
VITA and low-cost tax prep services appointments also provide SECU staff time to assist members with budgeting and financial counseling.
"Our goal at SECU is to help members and all North Carolinians keep more money in their pockets," said Tenesha Carter, SECU's senior vice president of tax preparation services. "The dedicated efforts of credit union tax preparers are helping SECU achieve that goal, and the amount of dollars saved on tax preparation fees confirms the positive difference SECU is making in the financial well-being of our state."
SECU, based in Raleigh, N.C., has more than $23 billion in assets.