What is VITA
Thank you for your interest in the St. Thomas University School of Law Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program. Founded in 1984 by Professor Mark J. Wolff, making it the oldest pro bono program at St. Thomas Law, the IRS-certified, law student volunteers have been providing this much needed services to qualifying low to moderate income taxpayers in South Florida, free of charge.
Over the years, we have served thousands of individuals from the local community which has resulted in an excess of $5,000,000 in refunds to taxpayers participating in the program and student pro bono hours have exceeded 30,000. Last year alone, the volunteers prepared a total of 302 returns with refunds totaling $309,541. Since our service is free, our clients got to see every single penny of the $309,541.
Our mission is simple: giving back to the community while gaining valuable hands-on experience in tax related matters. VITA understands the diverse community in which we provide our services to, which mirrors our diverse student body. We are lucky enough to be able to provide tax assistance in a variety of languages including English, Spanish, Creole, and Russian to name a few.
VITA offers tax preparation assistance to taxpayers earning $54,000 or less. VITA also offers assistance to individuals who are not required to file tax returns, but are recommended to do so in order to protect against identity theft.
Our very own IRS-certified student volunteers work one-on-one with tax payers providing basic tax services such as:
- W-2 Employees Tax Returns;
- Self-Employment Tax Returns;
- Social Security Income;
- Applicable deductions and credits, such as Earned Income Tax Credit, Child Tax Credit, and Education Credits, which may help to minimize the individuals tax liability.
Additionally, St. Thomas Law sponsors a low income taxpayer clinic for qualifying individuals who are having issues with the IRS or U.S. Tax Court.