Department of Family Services - Employment and Training

CONTACT INFORMATION: Monday–Friday 8 a.m.–4:30 p.m.
703-533-5400 TTY 711
Virginia Career Works – Fairfax Annandale Center - 7611 Little River Turnpike (West Wing) Suite 300W
Annandale, VA 22003
Lisa Tatum

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) - Free Income Tax Preparation

If you or your family earned less than $60,000 in 2022, you may qualify for this free service!

The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program is a national program sponsored by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to help families maximize their tax returns and avoid the fees businesses charge to prepare taxes. Northern Virginia CASH is a coalition of community partners who support the VITA sites in Northern Virginia. For 15 years the Fairfax County Department of Family Services has provided operational support to the coalition partners assisting about 4,000 families to receive a combined average refund total of $6 million each year.

In-person VITA services are available at several sites in Northern Virginia. Walk-ins are welcome, no appointments are needed. For more information, please send an email or call 703-533-5320 (please leave a message).

VITA Tax Season 2022 preparation services begin January 2023.


Gerry Hyland Government Center
8350 Richmond Hwy, Alexandria, VA 22309 
Tuesday & Wednesday 6-8 p.m.
Saturday 10 a.m.-3 p.m.

Operates beginning 1/31/23 through 4/15/23


Virginia Career Works - Fairfax Annandale Center
7611 Little River Turnpike, Annandale, VA 22033
Tuesday & Thursday 4-6:30 p.m.
Saturday 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Operates beginning 1/31/23 through 4/15/23


Neighborhood Resource Center
1086 Elden St., Herndon, VA 20170
Thursdays 6-8 p.m., 
Saturdays 9:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m.

Operates beginning 2/2/23 through 4/15/23


Reston Employment Resource Center 
11484 Washington Plaza W Suite 110, Reston, VA 20190
Tuesday 3:30-7 p.m.
Saturday 9 a.m.-12 p.m.

Operates beginning 1/31/23 through 4/15/23

The IRS Free File Program is a public-private partnership between the IRS and many tax preparation and filing software industry leaders who provide their brand-name products for free. It provides two ways for taxpayers to prepare and file their federal income tax online:

1) Traditional IRS Free File provides free online tax preparation and filing options on IRS partner websites. IRS partners are online tax preparation companies that develop and deliver this service at no cost to qualifying taxpayers.

2) Free File Fillable Forms are electronic federal tax forms you can fill out and file online for free. If you choose this option, you should know how to prepare your own tax return. Please note, it is the only IRS Free File option available for taxpayers whose income (AGI) is greater than $73,000.

Please note, it is the only IRS Free File option available for taxpayers whose income (AGI) is greater than $73,000.

Visit for more information.

Getting Ready to File

For more information on how to get yourself ready to prepare your taxes, check out 2021 tips from the IRS.

Tax Credits

The Earned Income Tax Credit is a refundable tax credit for working individuals and families with low to moderate income, particularly those with children. Find out if you qualify. The IRS recently updated their refundable tax credit webpage.


Check out IRS videos, including those in alternative languages.


What is the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program?
As part of the Northern Virginia CASH Campaign, the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program provides free tax preparation services to low-income families. Working with local businesses and government agencies, the mission is to raise awareness about the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and increase financial literacy among low-income taxpayers.

Volunteers are needed from late January through late April. Training takes place during November and December.

Volunteer at any location in the Northern Virginia area. Go to the “Locations” tab for sites and hours.

How Often and How Long?
Volunteer sessions are one weeknight and/or Saturdays each week for 12 weeks. Each volunteer session lasts between 3 and 5 hours.

What Can I Do?
Prepare tax returns, greet clients, help clients organize their documents and fill out their Intake Sheet, or translate.

Will I Receive Training?
Tax Preparers and screeners will need up to eight hours of training and screeners and translators will need up to one hour. We do provide training at our main office.

Do I Need to be Certified?
Yes, all volunteers must pass the IRS Standards of Conduct (about one hour to complete). All Tax Preparers and Screeners must also pass the IRS Basic test (about four hours to complete and receive certification).

What Experience is Required?
Tax Preparers and screeners should have prepared a tax return (self or someone else) or have had work experience or classroom training similar to preparing taxes. The ability to learn new software is also important. Greeter and Translator positions do not require previous experience. All volunteers should understand and speak English very well, enjoy meeting people, and be detail oriented.

Will My Volunteer Effort Really Make a Difference?
In 2021, the Northern Virginia VITA program resulted in federal tax refunds of over $3 million for families and individuals with low income. With the help of 88 dedicated and trained volunteers staffing 9 VITA sites, 1,474 low-income families prepared and filed their 2021 tax returns. Over $1 million was awarded back to those families who qualified for the Child Tax Credit (CTC) and over $900,000 to those who qualified for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC).

What Kind of Financial Education Should We be Able to Provide to VITA Customers?
The most significant financial education we provide is helping our clients understand their tax returns. Our volunteers take their time and explain the returns to their clients. A typical client question is – why is my refund different from last year? This opens up a conversation about dependents, filing status, income and credits. We also spend time helping clients understand their Forms W-2 and paystubs. For more information on additional financial resources provided through VITA, click here.

Interested in volunteering? Contact or call 703-533-5320

*Fairfax County is committed to nondiscrimination on the basis of disability in all county programs, services and activities. To request reasonable accommodations or to receive this information in an alternate format, send an email or call 703-533-5702; TTY 711.
Neither the NVACASH Coalition, Fairfax County Government nor any of their employees or volunteers make any warranty, expressed or implied including the warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any information apparatus, product, or process disclosed, or represents that its use would not infringe privately-owned rights.

NVACASH Coalition, Fairfax County Government nor any of their employees or volunteers are not responsible for the contents of any off-site pages referenced through links. The responsibility for content rests solely with the organizations that are providing the information. Specific details regarding a document should be directed to the appropriate organization. All support issues should be addressed to the provider you select. Please note that online filing providers may charge a fee for their service.

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