BSU Students Offer Free Tax Help through VITA

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program.
VITA 2019

For more than 25 years, Bemidji State University’s Department of Accountancy has offered annual free federal and state tax preparation and e-filing, sponsored by the IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program.

This year, the IRS is offering its VITA tax and eFiling software free to anyone, regardless of income level. The free software guides taxpayers by asking sets of simply answered questions and prepares their return, similar to other self-preparation tax software. To access the software, email

Students who have completed BSU’s Tax I course and passed IRS certification tests will offer assistance to taxpayers who generally make $57,000 or less, persons with disabilities, the elderly, limited English-speaking taxpayers and others who need assistance in preparing their own tax returns.

Following COVID-19 guidelines, the department will not offer in-person tax preparation assistance, but will instead be available Monday through Thursday from Feb. 3–April 15 to offer support via email at

If returns are outside of this scope, taxpayers will need to identify other opportunities for support, such as contacting the IRS directly, working with a professional tax preparation service, or using a commercial self-guided tax preparation service such as TurboTax.

Bemidji State’s VITA program is overseen by Bemidji State’s Jeffrey Everhart, assistant professor of accountancy, and Dr. Sandra Kranz, adjunct instructor of accounting.