Tag Archives: income tax

LUM Income Tax Assistance in Full Swing


Impressive Stats So Far

In just six weeks, the LUM Tax Assistance Program has had a tremendous positive impact on our community. Some interesting statistics so far are as follows:

  • Total Income Tax Returns Filed – 328
  • Total Earned Income Credit – $215,332
  • Average Adjusted Gross Income – $21,394
  • Total Refund Amount – $616,838

LUM would not be able to offer this service without the skilled, trained volunteers who make this important LUM program such a success each year. At LUM, taxpayers get one-on-one help from IRS-certified volunteers who prepare their taxes at no charge. The 2018 LUM Tax Assistance Program is led by Ben Murphy.

More information on the LUM Tax Assistance Program may be found HERE.


Donate to the LUM Tax Assistance Program.

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Tax Assistance Program

Ben Murphy Returns to Seasonal Position


LUM Tax Assistance Director Starts Second Year

2016-09-20-murphy-ben-002-2

The director of the LUM Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program is a seasonal, part-time position. Ben Murphy returned to the role for his second year.

Originally from Lawrenceburg, Kentucky, Ben now lives in West Lafayette with his wife, Alison, and son, Oliver. Ben earned a BS in Computer Graphics Technology and Management, both from Purdue University. At LUM, Ben also directed the 2016 Turkey Trot 5K Run. He also coordinates the Financial Peace University classes at St. Thomas Aquinas Center and is a Financial Coach.

Ben shares that “as a Financial Coach my goal in life is to serve people who have a desire to change their habits. By teaching people how to establish a budget, pay off debts, and change their spending behavior they can learn to save and invest in their future.” Ben is excited to return as the LUM Volunteer Income Tax Assistance director because he works with a wonderful team of volunteers who are committed to working with individuals in successfully filing their income tax returns. He stated that his goal is to “bring back as much tax relief as possible to the community — and give hope to people by showing them that they can change their lives starting today. One step at a time moves us toward a new future.”

He draws inspiration from the outdoors sharing that “seeing the beauty in nature reminds me of God’s presence in our world and revitalizes my spirit, mind, and body.” Ben enjoys hanging out with his family, playing and listening to music, reading self improvement books, listening to education podcast, watching movies, and running.

LUM is fortunate to have someone with Ben’s skills in charge of the LUM VITA program. If you wish to invest in the program or become a tax assistance volunteer, click the appropriate button below.


If you wish to volunteer with the LUM Tax Assistance program, click HERE.


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Tax Assistance Program

Tax Assistance Program Offers Free Service


LUM Needs Volunteer Income Tax Assistants

Make a difference in your community by becoming a LUM tax volunteer. Volunteers are needed from January 29 through April 12 for the LUM Tax Assistance Program.

No experience is necessary — and training is provided. You may even qualify for continuing education credits. There are a number of volunteer roles available — click HERE to see descriptions. For tax preparers, some accounting experience is desired.

In all tax volunteer roles, individuals who are bilingual, multi-lingual, and have international experience are helpful. As a LUM tax assistance volunteer, you’ll join a program that’s helped millions of people file tax returns at no charge for more than 40 years. Your help will make a difference — and have a significant positive impact.

LUM strengthens our community through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program. VITA, a nationwide IRS program, secures greater financial stability and economic opportunity for working families — and directly impacts OUR community.
If you are interested or need more information please click HERE or call or email Ben Murphy (765-423-2691 | bmurphy@lumserve.org).

Below are some of the volunteer roles needed by the LUM free tax assistance program:


Greeter/Screener

  • You greet everyone visiting the site to create a pleasant atmosphere. You screen taxpayers to determine the type of assistance they need and confirm they have the necessary documents to complete their tax returns. Tax law certification is not required for this position.

Interpreter

  • You provide free language interpreter services to customers who are not fluent in English. Basic tax knowledge is helpful, but it is not required for this position.

Site Administrator/Coordinator

  • You have excellent organizational and leadership skills. You are the primary resource for sharing your knowledge of the program and are available to assist with any issues that may arise. You develop and maintain schedules for all volunteers to ensure adequate coverage, supplies and equipment at your site. Tax law certification is not always required for this position.

Tax Preparer

  • You complete and successfully certify in tax law training, including the use of electronic filing software, to provide free tax return preparation for eligible taxpayers.

Quality Reviewer

  • You review tax returns completed by volunteer tax preparers, ensuring that every taxpayer receives top quality service and that the tax returns are error-free. You must be tax law certified at least at the Intermediate level.

Computer Specialist or troubleshooter

  • You have a working knowledge of personal computers, software and communications systems. Tax law certification is not required for this position. If working at a self-prepare site you must become familiar with the various tax software option(s) available at your site. Although you may have less taxpayer interaction than most volunteers, you must be patient with those individuals who may not be as computer literate.

Tax Coach

  • You provide tax law assistance and guide taxpayers in preparing their own tax returns. Tax law certification is required for this volunteer role and training is available on-line or through face-to-face instruction.

So, if you’re comfortable with technology, enjoy helping your community, need experience for your resume, or just like to have fun and have the time to volunteer, visit http://www.irs.gov/Individuals/Volunteer-in-Your-Community, complete and submit Form 14310 using the submit by email button on top of the form. Someone will contact you to help you get started.


You may also email or call LUM directly {lum@lumserve.org – (765) 423-2691} to get involved in the LUM Tax Assistance Program serving Tippecanoe County residents.

More information on the LUM Tax Assistance Program may be found HERE.


Donate to the LUM Tax Assistance Program.

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Tax Assistance Program

Meet Russell — LUM Volunteer Tax Preparer



The Tax Season has just concluded at LUM, which means we once again say farewell to several familiar faces who since January have offered assistance to individuals in our community to complete their federal, state and county income tax returns — the LUM volunteer tax preparers with the LUM Tax Assistance Program or VITA (volunteer income tax assistance). One of these volunteers was Russell J. Clark who has been preparing taxes at LUM since our program started in 2002.

Originally from Griffith, Indiana, Russ lives in Lafayette with his wife, Katherine. He earned a BA from Indiana University in Government & Economics and is retired from an impressive career with the US Department of Labor. Katherine is a retired public school library assistant. Russ & Katherine have four grown children (two girls and two twin boys), three of whom are married; and six grandchildren. Their children live in Lafayette, West Lafayette, Indianapolis and Minnesota. Russ, Katherine and two of their children graduated from Indiana University and the other two children earned degrees from Purdue University and Saint Joseph’s College.

Russ and his family are parishioners of St. Lawrence Catholic Church (Lafayette). In addition to his work with the Tax Assistance Program, Russ has also served on the LUM Board of Directors representing St. Lawrence for 10 years, and was elected to the Executive Board. In the community, Russ also volunteers with his church, has served as the president of WALLA, on the board of the Tippecanoe County Credit Union and on the Catholic Build board which coordinates the fundraising and building of local Habitat for Humanity homes for the Diocese of Lafayette-in-Indiana.


Russ shared that he gets great satisfaction with working with LUM because 

“LUM has a talented staff and is a well-organized and well-respected organization with a terrific reputation and effective and well-thought-out programs that meet the vital needs of the families in our community — like Jubilee Christmas, the Good Samaritan Program and the Tax Assistance Program.”

He enjoys using his expertise with the Tax Assistance Program. Russ shared that

he particularly “enjoys the conversations he has with families in preparation for filing taxes for each member of their household.”

These are important conversations that oftentimes result in a higher tax return. He recalls fondly a family who ended up with an $8,000 tax refund, which enabled them to pay off their debt and purchase a home of their own.

Russ believes that

“the LUM Tax Program is having a tremendous impact on this community and just as important, it’s assisting individuals and families through a stressful process.”


Russ is yet another example of how fortunate LUM is to have willing volunteers of this caliber. LUM could not accomplish its mission without volunteers — and is blessed to have volunteers like Russ who give selflessly and generously, year after year.

Thank you, Russ.


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Tax Assistance Program

Meet the New LUM Tax Assistance Director


Ben Murphy — Tax Assistance, program director2016-09-20-murphy-ben-002-2

Ben will oversee the LUM Tax Assistance Program.

He is originally from Lawrenceburg, Kentucky and now lives in West Lafayette with his wife, Alison. Ben earned a BS in Computer Graphics Technology and Operations & Supply Chain Management, both from Purdue University. Currently he oversees the LUM Turkey Trot 5K Run, coordinates the Financial Peace University classes at St. Thomas Aquinas Center and is working on becoming a Financial Coach for his long term career aspiration.

Ben loves running outdoors, hanging out with his wife, exploring nature and reading. He and his wife are active in the community and within their church, St. Ann’s Church. He also has volunteered with the LUM After School Program. Ben shared that he is “excited to use his financial background and experience to assist families in our community through the tax program at LUM.” LUM is fortunate to have someone with Ben’s skills in charge of the LUM Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program.

If you wish to volunteer with the LUM Tax Assistance program, click HERE.


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Meet Andrea — LUM Volunteer Tax Preparer


Volunteer2016-02-16 Tax 008 (2)s are an integral part of the LUM Income Tax Assistance Program — and this year, 15 LUM volunteers studied and received IRS certification to prepare tax returns. It’s a big commitment of their time and effort, but the return for volunteers is big too. Today we’d like to shine a spotlight on one of our superstars — Andrea Schmidt.

Originally from Waukegan, Illinois, Andrea earned a BS from Northwestern University (Elementary Education/Linguistics) and a Master’s in Education from University of Illinois, Chicago. She and her husband, David, moved to Lafayette in 1992 so he could take a job as a physician in private practice after 11 years as a US Air Force physician.

She then earned an associate’s degree in paralegal studies from Ivy Tech Community College and was a paralegal for over 10 years. Andrea and David, both now retired, have three grown sons – John, who lives in Phoenix; and Christian and Peter, who live in Lafayette. They have six grandchildren – two from each son.

Andrea has volunteered at LUM for six of the past seven tax seasons. She donates 15 hours of her time each week.

“I enjoy helping people in such a real and tangible way. For some of my clients, a full one-third of their annual income comes from the tax refund we are able to secure for them through LUM. And because we don’t charge for our service, low-income wage earners are much more likely to file their returns.”

Andrea says the best part about his volunteer work in the LUM Tax Assistance Program is that it helps her to better understand the lives of low-income wage earners. “My stereotypes are challenged every time I come to LUM. I am amazed by how hard people work and how far they are able to stretch their limited dollars. It’s a real eye opener.” The remainder of the year, Andrea volunteers with the LUM Good Samaritan Program.


The 2016  LUM Tax Assistance Program is led by Marilyn Zerbes. Call
765.423.2691 for more information.


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Tax Assistance Program

Meet a LUM Tax Assistance Volunteer

2015-02-23 AnnePellegrino 005 (gold)Volunteers are an integral part of the LUM Income Tax Assistance Program — and we’d like you to meet one of our superstars — Ann Pellegrino.

Originally from Easton, Pennsylvania, Ann graduated from Middlebury College (Vermont) before ending up in the mid-west. She lives in Lafayette with her husband, Lou. Ann & Lou have two grown daughters & three grandsons.

She is a retired professional from Purdue University. While at Purdue, Ann administered programs in Gifted Education and later was an administrative assistant in a research laboratory in Biological Sciences.

As a volunteer tax preparer, Ann’s expertise is in preparing taxes for what the government classifies as “non-resident aliens.” About 75% of her tax clients are international students from Purdue. Ann has been a dedicated volunteer with the LUM Tax Assistance Program for over six years and has over 15 years experience in preparing taxes.

Ann shared that “it’s just so much fun. I enjoy working with the clients and figuring it out like one big puzzle. I love volunteering because I get to meet and work with very interesting people from all over the world.”

A tremendous thank you to Ann and all of our LUM Tax Assistance Program volunteers.


LUM Tax Assistance Program is Busy — Impressive Stats So Far

In just five weeks, the LUM Tax Assistance Program has had a tremendous positive impact on our community. Some interesting statistics so far are as follows:2015-02-23 AnnePellegrino 013 (gold)

  • Total Income Tax Returns Filed – 400
  • Total Earned Income Credit – $390,982
  • Total Education Tax Credit – $5,016
  • Total Refund Amount – $790,310

LUM would not be able to offer this service without the skilled, trained volunteers who
make this important LUM program such a success each year. At LUM, taxpayers get one-on
-one help from IRS-certified volunteers who prepare their taxes at no charge. The 2015
LUM Tax Assistance Program is led by Sandra Dunn-El (pictured above). Call
765.423.2691 for more information.


Make a Donation Button
Tax Assistance Program

LUM Tax Assistance Program is Busy — Impressive Stats So Far

2015-02-23 AnnePellegrino 013 (gold)In just five weeks, the LUM Tax Assistance Program has had a tremendous positive impact on our community. Some interesting statistics so far are as follows:

  •  Total Income Tax Returns Filed – 400
  • Total Earned Income Credit – $390,982
  • Total Education Tax Credit – $5,016
  • Total Refund Amount – $790,310

LUM would not be able to offer this service without the skilled, trained volunteers who
make this important LUM program such a success each year. At LUM, taxpayers get one-on
-one help from IRS-certified volunteers who prepare their taxes at no charge. The 2015
LUM Tax Assistance Program is led by Sandra Dunn-El (pictured above). Call
765.423.2691 for more information.


Meet a LUM Tax Assistance Volunteer

Volunteers are an integral part of the LUM Income Tax Assistance Program — and we’d like you to meet one of our superstars — Ann Pellegrino.

2015-02-23 AnnePellegrino 005 (gold)

Originally from Easton, Pennsylvania, Ann graduated from Middlebury College (Vermont) before ending up in the mid-west. She lives in Lafayette with her husband, Lou. Ann & Lou have two grown daughters & three grandsons.

She is a retired professional from Purdue University. While at Purdue, Ann administered programs in Gifted Education and later was an administrative assistant in a research laboratory in Biological Sciences.

As a volunteer tax preparer, Ann’s expertise is in preparing taxes for what the government classifies as “non-resident aliens.” About 75% of her tax clients are international students from Purdue. Ann has been a dedicated volunteer with the LUM Tax Assistance Program for over six years and has over 15 years experience in preparing taxes.

Ann shared that “it’s just so much fun. I enjoy working with the clients and figuring it out like one big puzzle. I love volunteering because I get to meet and work with very interesting people from all over the world.”

A tremendous thank you to Ann and all of our LUM Tax Assistance Program volunteers.


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Tax Assistance Program

Ivy Tech Professional Internships at LUM

ivytechintern Samantha Hardebeck is the new LUM After School Program Intern with responsibilities for assisting the program director with the implementation of the program.

Samantha is from Frankfort, Indiana. She is a student at Ivy Tech Community College in the School of Liberal Arts & Sciences. Samantha is in the Human Services program focusing on child psychology.

After graduation, Samantha  plans on being pre-school teacher.

 


ivytechintern2Vivian Kuo is the new LUM Immigration Clinic Intern with additional responsibility with the Tax Assistance and Good Samaritan Programs.

She was born in Taiwan and is from Seattle, Washington. Vivian is a psychology major at Purdue University and taking classes at Ivy Tech Community College in the Human Services program.

After graduation from Purdue, Vivian plans on pursuing a doctorate in clinical psychology and a career in family and relationship therapy.

 

Client Corner – LUM Good Samaritan Program – Meet Gregory Gillard


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Meet Gregory Gillard from Lafayette. He is a client of LUM Case Management, a former guest of the LUM Emergency Shelter and a recipient of the LUM Good Samaritan Fund.

Gregory was unemployed and needed to find a job close to his aunt who has recently taken ill. He moved to Lafayette to look for work and needed to stay as a guest in the LUM Emergency Shelter—and he took full advantage of LUM Case Management.

Within a matter of a few weeks, he landed a job at downtown restaurant and signed a lease. During this transition into his new home and his new job, Gregory needed some emergency financial assistance from the LUM Good Samaritan Fund.

He simply needed “non-skid” shoes for work, some assistance with his security deposit and one or two pieces of modest furniture like a dresser.

Gregory appreciates LUM for giving him the support he needed to get a job and find a home — which gives him the stability and security to allow him to visit his family often, especially his aunt — just in time for the holidays.

If you wish to donate to the LUM Good Samaritan Fund, LUM Emergency Shelter and LUM Case Management program, click HERE.