Los Angeles County residents should watch their mailboxes as the Internal Revenue Service is launching an awareness campaign for a tax credit claimed by only one in four households that are qualified.
The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is designed to lower the tax burden on low-income working families. The EITC is significant and can range into the thousands of dollars per household.
The EITC, along with Social Security, is considered one of the most successful federal anti-poverty programs in the nation, as measured by the number of households it places above the poverty line each year.
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Unfortunately, one in four households who qualify for the credit fail to claim it. This week, the IRS is launching its first-ever statewide California EITC Reminder Initiative.
Approximately 46,000 EITC notices will be going out across California next week, nearly 13,000 of which will be going out to LA County residents.
The most important thing to know is that if you receive a letter from the IRS this month, don’t throw it away, as it could mean thousands of dollars for your family. (Families and individuals can claim the EITC for up to three years previously.)
The California EITC Reminder Initiative stems from a Jobs Committee hearing chaired by Los Angeles City Councilman Richard Alarcón last November that was devoted exclusively to considering ways to increase the number of EITC claims in Los Angeles. At that meeting, the NYC Commissioner of Finance flew out to discuss a successful NYC and NY State model that has increased the receipt of the EITC in that state, joined by the regional IRS Director.
In New York, reminder notices were mailed out to all tax filers that appeared to be eligible for, but failed to claim the EITC. This year, as a result of the hearing, the IRS decided to launch a similar program in California.