Maryland Taxes: What You Need to Know From Comptroller Peter Franchot
From the Office of the Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot:
As the tax season begins, Comptroller Peter Franchot today celebrated the 7th Annual National Earned Income Tax Credit Day by reiterating his goal of raising awareness of what he calls “the most effective anti-poverty tool” available to taxpayers. He marked the occasion earlier today by speaking at the Prince George’s CASH Campaign Kickoff.
“The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is the most effective tax credit available to help lift people out of poverty,” said Comptroller Franchot. “Behind the numbers, these are parents and children receiving a better life in Maryland because of the Earned Income Tax Credit. But working families must apply for the credit in order to receive the benefit. I am grateful to work with partners such as the Maryland CASH Campaign, new emerging financial literacy coalitions and Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) centers throughout the state to provide free tax preparation services for those in need and to promote the EITC to those who qualify.”
“Many taxpayers eligible to receive EITC don’t receive them,” commented Robin McKinney, Director of the Maryland CASH Campaign. “The Maryland CASH Campaign and our partners help eligible taxpayers find all the refunds they deserve. Not getting what you are due is not acceptable. Our goal is boost the financial well-being of hard-working Marylanders by preparing and filing their tax returns for free while providing ways to increase wealth such as purchasing US Savings Bonds with part of the refund.”
The EITC is a significant tool for combating poverty and helping working families in Maryland move toward financial self-sufficiency. Nationally, EITC returns billions of dollars to millions of working families, helping to lift them out of poverty.
This credit distributes more money than either Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) or the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and, in combination with the Child Tax Credit, is almost as much as both these programs combined. The EITC supports community and workforce development initiatives.
Comptroller Franchot, alongside other financial literacy advocates, is currently working to ensure that all eligible Marylanders know about the EITC and know how to claim it. The agency provided all employers in the state with the maximum income eligibility for the state earned income tax credit and employers are required to alert an employee who may be eligible for the federal and Maryland EITC. Employees may be entitled to claim an EITC on their 2012 federal and Maryland income tax returns if both their federal adjusted gross income and their earned income is less than the following:
- $45,060 ($50,270 for married filing jointly) if they have three or more qualifying children,
- $41,952 ($47,162 for married filing jointly) if they have two qualifying children,
- $36,920 ($42,130 for married filing jointly) if they have one qualifying child, or
- •$13,980 ($19,190 for married filing jointly) if they do not have a qualifying child.
The Comptroller’s Office offers free tax preparation assistance for Maryland returns at each of its 12 branches offices throughout the state. Locations of offices can be found online at www.marylandtaxes.com. Taxpayers who have questions about their taxes can also contact a representative at 410-260-7980 or 1-800-MD-TAXES.
“I am firmly committed to helping every qualifying Marylander take advantage of the EITC,” said Comptroller Franchot. “I want to thank the organizations and volunteers throughout Maryland who work hard to help qualifying Marylanders receive this tax credit they desperately need.”
Comptroller Franchot also urged all Marylanders to file electronically this year to help the state save money on processing returns and, most importantly, to ensure that Marylanders get their refunds quickly. Taxpayers filing electronically can expect to get their refunds within a few days while those submitting paper returns should plan to wait several weeks for their refund checks.
“This year, I am urging every taxpayer who is able to file electronically. Not only is it more secure for taxpayers and save the state money, but taxpayers who file electronically can expect their refunds within a few days,” said Comptroller Franchot.