KU Law students offer local assistance with free tax preparation

LAWRENCE – Tax season is underway, and University of Kansas School of Law students will once again assist eligible community members with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program.

This spring, KU Law students can prepare returns for taxpayers who are residents of Douglas County, make less than $72,000 per household per year and do not itemize their deductions. The VITA sessions began Feb. 19 and will run through Tax Day, which is April 15. No sessions will take place March 9-17 during KU’s spring break.

Sessions are 6-8:45 p.m. Mondays and Wednesdays and 9-11:45 a.m. Saturdays at Green Hall. A satellite location is offered 5-7 p.m. Thursdays at Lawrence-Douglas County Housing Authority, 1600 Haskell Ave.

This year’s clinic is coordinated by third-year law student Shannon Greene.

“The VITA program is a great way to help people in our community,” Greene said. “This is my third year participating in the program, and I have enjoyed my experience in it.”

Last year, the VITA clinic filed 118 returns, which almost doubled the amount the clinic filed in the previous year. Greene said she hoped to see continued growth of the program in the 2024 tax season.

“I’m excited to see how many returns we file this year and to see the positive impact we have on individuals’ lives in our community,” Greene said.

The law school’s VITA program operates on a first-come, first-served basis, and the number of preparers varies by site. Those seeking assistance are encouraged to arrive near the start of each session.

Taxpayers should bring proof of identification and all relevant documentation, including proof of income and expenditures.

For more information, contact the VITA program at 785-864-9227 or by email.

Legal Services for Students (LSS) also offers free tax filing assistance through a VITA grant from the Internal Revenue Service. U.S. resident taxpayers who earned less than $79,000 in 2023 can prepare and file their returns electronically for free with software provided by LSS. International students, faculty and staff at KU filing as nonresident aliens can file their taxes for free with LSS assistance with no income limit. LSS also offers in-person tax filing assistance workshops during the spring filing season. For more information about tax programs provided by LSS visit the LSS website or by email.

“We know tax filing can feel complicated and even overwhelming for taxpayers,” said Jo Hardesty, director of Legal Services for Students. “That’s why at LSS our goal is not only to help taxpayers get their returns filed but to educate taxpayers about the tax system. We want to demystify the process and for our tax clients to feel confident when approaching their tax returns the following year, and every year going forward.”

Thu, 02/22/2024


Emma Herrman

Media Contacts

Emma Herrman

School of Law