Did you know that if you make $54,000 or less, you can get your taxes done for FREE?

United Way of Merced provides free tax preparation through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program better known as VITA. The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program offers free tax help to people who generally make $54,000 or less, persons with disabilities and limited English speaking taxpayers who need assistance in preparing their own tax returns. IRS-certified volunteers provide free basic income tax return preparation with electronic filing to qualified individuals.

Don’t forget to mention CalEITC while filing your taxes. What is CalEITC? CLICK HERE.

Check out the flyer displayed at the bottom of the page to know what documents to bring.

Individuals can get their taxes done for free one of two ways. They can visit a tax preparation site in their county or file on their own online. View below for options.

In person:

United Way (Merced, CA)

658  W. Main Street

Every Other Saturday-Starting, February 3rd


(209) 383-4242

Only accepting walk-ins

Salvation Army (Los Banos, CA)

123 4th Street

Monday thru Saturday- Starting, January 30th


(209) 827-4945

Only accepting appointments 


        Visit MyFreeTaxes and follow the instructions.

All sources are creditable and safe.

CLICK HERE to find other free tax preparation sites that aren’t through VITA.

Make sure to file your taxes before April 18, 2018!



United Ways across California have teamed up with CalEITC in order to help hard working Californians receive the tax credit they deserve. California Earned Income Tax Credit-  (CALEITC4ME) is an unprecedented statewide outreach campaign to encourage lower income Californians to claim the newly passed state earned income tax credit as well as the federal credit. In addition to a targeted outreach effort designed to reach previous and new taxpayers through trusted community partners, CALEITC4ME is embarking on an effort to increase the awareness about and availability of free tax preparation and is developing public/private partnerships to minimize unscrupulous practices that result in low income individuals and families losing too much of their precious earnings to paid tax preparers and high-fee check cashing agencies.

Know It

Governor Jerry Brown and the Legislature created the first-ever California Earned Income Tax Credit (CalEITC). California joins 24 other states and the District of Columbia in adopting a state EITC to supplement the federal EITC.

What is the California Earned Income Tax Credit (CalEITC)?

  • CalEITC is a cash back tax credit that puts money back into the pockets of California’s working families and individuals.
  • In its first year, CalEITC boosted the income of about 385,000 families, who shared almost $200 million from the cash-back credit.

Am I eligible?

You may be eligible for the CalEITC if:

  • You have earned income within certain limits (see chart below), AND
  • You, your spouse, and any qualifying children each have a social security number (SSN), AND
  • You do not use the “married/RDP filing separate” filing status, AND
  • You lived in California for more than half the tax year

Review the chart below to see if you may be eligible and how much you may qualify for when filing your 2016 tax return.

Number of Children Maximum Income CalEITC* Federal EITC*
None $6,717 $217 $506
1 $10,087 $1,452 $3,373
2 $14,161 $2,406 $5,572
3 or more $14,161 $2,706 $6,269

Use the EITC Calculator for more exact results by clicking here.

Find FREE tax preparation sites near you by clicking here.


Visit Merced or Mariposa County Resources