United Way VITA program offers free tax help to local residents

Tax season is upon us and low to moderate income Santa Barbara County residents are invited to take advantage of putting more money back in their pocket with the help of United Way of Santa Barbara County’s (UWSBC) Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA). 


From February 2nd to April 18th, volunteers at VITA sites throughout the community will provide free tax filing services to local residents making $67,000 or less annually. IRS-certified volunteers will provide free basic income tax return preparation with electronic filing to qualified individuals. Last year, UWSBC filed 1,362 tax returns and gave back over $2,065,586 in federal refunds to local community members.


UWSBC is supported by partners at the Housing Authority of the City of Santa Barbara, Immigrant Hope, AARP, and Eastside Library. UWSBC works closely with these organizations to provide participating sites and services to residents throughout the County. 


This year, for the safety of clients and volunteers, there will be three different sites where clients can drop off tax information and volunteers will prepare and file returns remotely. Once complete, clients will be alerted when their tax return is available for pick up. 



Clients must wear masks at ALL sites.


Eastside Library (February 2 – April 18) 


Tuesdays & Wednesdays 4-7pm

1102 E. Montecito St.


Immigrant Hope 


Mondays & Thursdays 12:30pm-4:00pm

935 San Andres Street


Goleta Valley Community Center (February 18 – April 18)


Fridays 12pm – 3:30pm

5679 Hollister Ave.



United Way of Santa Barbara County (February 16 – April 18) 


Wednesdays 12pm-4pm: AARP TAX AID

Saturdays 9am -1pm: VITA 

320 E. Gutierrez St.


What to bring:

  • Copy of prior year federal and state tax returns for years to be done: ( 2019 for 2020, 2020 for 2021)
  • Copy of photo ID and spouse’s if filing jointly (driver’s license of passport)
  • Copy of social security cards or Individual Taxpayer ID Numbers (ITIN) for each family member
  • For married filing jointly, both spouses must be present to review tax return and sign return
  • For all jobs W-2’s, 1099’s, 1098’s for all years tax returns to be done
  • IRS letter 6419 “Advanced Child Tax Credits”, if received during the later part of 2021
  • IRS letter 6475 “Third Economic Impact Payment” and other payments received from IRS (2020 & 2021) and California Franchise Tax Board 2021
  • Copy of voided check if direct deposit or refund requested
  • Bank routing and account numbers (if using direct deposit)
  • All forms for 1095 Health Insurance statements


Dates and times are subject to change, for the most up to date information please visit: unitedwaysb.org/VITA



About United Way of Santa Barbara County 

Since 1923, United Way of Santa Barbara County (UWSBC) has been a key leader in local efforts to empower children, families, and communities through its own unique collaborative programs and initiatives, partnership convening efforts, volunteer development, and funding. UWSBC’s mission is to enrich the lives of children and families and build resilient communities by leading local programs and partnerships that improve school readiness and academic achievement, financial empowerment, and crisis response and recovery. To learn more, please visit unitedwaysb.org.


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