Both the Center for Economic Progress (CEP) and Ladder Up utilize the time and talent of hundreds of volunteers each year who want to use their skills to help others file their taxes and secure critical refunds.
There are many reasons to become a tax volunteer, among them:
- Flexible hours: Volunteers are able to set their own schedules for the duration of the tax season, which runs from late January through mid-April. Volunteers manage their own schedules through an online system.
- Various service locations: CEP and Ladder Up operate tax sites located throughout the city. Many are hosted by community organizations, high schools, colleges, or libraries.
- No prior experience needed: You do not need to have a tax or finance background to become a volunteer; both organizations provide training through the IRS to prepare you for service at the tax sites. Also, the organizations need volunteers to fill non-tax roles as well (i.e. helping with client intake or using foreign language skills to help interpret for clients).
- Continuing Education credit: Enrolled Agents and non-credentialed tax return preparers can receive Continuing Education (CE) credit for their volunteer time. This IRS Fact Sheet provides more information about CE credits for tax professionals. Some law firms also grant pro bono credit for volunteer hours.
To learn more about how you can provide a valuable service to fellow Chicagoans, please visit the CEP and Ladder Up websites: