LatinaLista — Though “Tax Day” isn’t for a couple of months, most families are already eagerly waiting for that W-2 form to arrive in the mail so they can cash in on what the government owes them — especially during these unpredictable times.
Yet, chances are a lot of families don’t realize that there are a number of tax benefits families will be getting starting next year, and for some, this year, if they bought a home.
The economic recovery plan signed by President Obama in February, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), provides substantial tax benefits for most working families. It provides a new refundable Making Work Pay Credit, an expanded refundable Child Tax Credit, improvements to the Earned Income Tax Credit, the American Opportunity Tax Credit for higher education expenses that is refundable for the first time, and a refundable First-Time Home Buyer Credit.
For example, the Making Work Pay Credit, in effect for 2009 and 2010, applies to joint, not individual, earnings. In other words, a married couple can qualify for an $800 Making Work Pay Credit even if only one partner in the couple works.
It’s these kinds of information nuggets that families need to know about. According to the National Women’s Law Center (NWLC):
Families filing their 2009 tax returns may be eligible for up to:
* $2,100 from the federal Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit;
* $1,000 per child from the federal Child Tax Credit;
* $5,657 from the federal Earned Income Tax Credit; and
* $800 from the new Making Work Pay Credit.
To help educate taxpayers, family advocates and tax preparers, the NWLC has created the Tax Credits Outreach Campaign website.
On the site, there is information not only regarding the national tax credits for families but links to find out what each state provides as well. There is even a handy fact sheet that explains the benefits under each tax credit.
Though the majority of benefits don’t kick in until next year’s tax forms are filed, certain benefits will begin for those eligible to receive them.
Another great feature of the NWLC site is that it’s multilingual.
The website has one purpose for education families about these tax benefits and it’s one all hardworking families can appreciate because it’s all about: “Helping Families Put Money in Their Pockets!”