HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Filing taxes can be confusing and time-consuming if you don't know what you're doing.
Here's some help to ease your tax season blues. Amy Kalili tells us more about free tax prep services for Hawaiians.
"I came here to file taxes. I'm able to get it for free here. The thing was I started filling them out with my family and myself and it got pretty confusing," said Tobias Pointer, client of Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement (CNHA).
Ua hele mai no ke kôkua ʻoiai manuahi a ua hele a huikau iaʻu e hana ana ʻo au hoʻokahi.
This is a common sentiment for many of CNHA's clients.
Me kçlâ nô ka manaʻo o ka nui o nâ kânaka e ʻimi ana i nâ hana lawelawe a ko CNHA.
"I'm not used to filing taxes so this is the best way to do it and make sure that it got done. Here I am hoping to get a good tax return so I can pay my bills," said Tobias.
ʻAʻole au maʻa a he ala maikaʻi ia e paʻa ai a he kôkua ia kâlâ e hoʻihoʻi ʻia no ka uku pila.
CNHA has helped many of Hawaiʻi's families receive refunds totaling nearly $200,000.
Ua nui nâ ʻohana Hawaiʻi i kôkua ʻia e ko CNHA a he $200k ka huinanui kâlâ i hoʻçmi ʻia ma ka ʻauhau o kçia mau ʻohana.
"It's all about ‘how much money can I get back?'" said Rosalee Puaoi of CNHA. "It's about refunds. It's about ‘we heard about this one tax credit, am I eligible for that?'"
Mea nui kçia hoʻihoʻi ʻia o ke kâlâ. Makemake ana e ʻike inâ kû ana i nâ kulekele hoʻihoʻi.
There are many credits that families are eligible for but aren't aware of and don't typically claim.
Nui nâ mea e emi ai ka uku ʻauhau i kamaʻâina ʻole nô naʻe i ka nui o nâ ʻohana no laila, ʻaʻole hoʻohana ʻia.
"It's just about awareness that it's out there. That if you make $1 to thousands of dollars that you can get the credit back," said Rosalee.
Pili wale i ka hoʻonaʻauao a hoʻomaopopo no ka hiki ke hoʻihoʻi ʻia a hoʻçmi ʻia ka ʻauhau.
One of the most frequently overlooked tax credits is the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC).
ʻO kekahi o nâ pômaikaʻi nui i laha ʻole, ʻo ia ka Earned Income Tax Credit.
"What that equals to is about $5,000 to $5,600 worth of refunds. For the past couple of years, Hawaiʻi has been leaving about $45-$46 million of earned income credit on the table," said Rosalee.
He $5,000 - $5,600 ka huina e hoʻihoʻi ʻia. No kçia mau makahiki, waiho ʻia ana ma kahi o ka $45-46 miliona kâlâ i laila e hoʻihoʻi ʻole ʻia.
CNHA's tax services are provided free of charge but there are eligibility parameters.
ʻOiai he manuahi nô kçia kôkua ʻana o CNHA, loaʻa nô kekahi mau koina no nâ kânaka e kôkua ʻia.
"We can help individuals and families who make under $50,000," said Rosalee.
He kôkua no ka poʻe e hiki ʻole ke uku i kekahi nâna e hana. Kôkua ʻia nâ kânaka e loaʻa ana ma lalo o ke $50,000 o ka makahiki.
Free tax prep services are available statewide Thursday through Saturday.
Hiki ke ʻimi ʻia kçia kôkua manuahi a puni ka mokuʻâina mai ka Poʻahâ a i ka Lâ Pule.
To set up an appointment or for more information call 1-800-709-2642.
No ka hoʻopaʻa hâlâwai a no ka ʻike hou aku, e kelepona i ko CNHA ma 18007092642.
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