Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program

Lincoln Trail College's VITA program offers FREE tax assistance to low-to-moderate income (gross income less than $60,000), elderly (over age 60), limited English-speaking taxpayers, and those with disabilities. It is our privilege to help residents in need prepare their tax returns.

The VITA program is available from February 2 until the tax filing deadline in mid-April.

To make an appointment, call 618-546-2229 or email

Get Free Tax Preparation Help

To initiate service through the VITA program, please call 618-546-2229 or email You will schedule an appointment on a Friday.

During this visit, a trained volunteer will conduct a brief interview, verify your identity as required by the VITA program, and scan relevant tax documents. For a better idea about the intake interview questions, see Form 13614-C.

Following your visit, students from Lincoln Trail College, trained through the IRS VITA program, will prepare your tax return. You will receive a telephone call from the student preparation team if they have additional questions. Your tax return will be reviewed by a tax professional before it is returned to you.

After speaking with the preparation team and asking any questions you may have, you will be directed to return to Lincoln Trail College to pick up a printed copy of your tax return and sign documents authorizing the team to file your returns electronically.

Frequently Asked Questions

The VITA program prepares current year returns.

Questions? Call 618-546-2229 or email

Returns will be prepared at Lincoln Trail College in Williams Hall Room 112.

Appointments will begin on February 2, 2024.

  • Every taxpayer and their spouse must have a photo ID.
  • Social Security Cards (or ITIN Letters) for the taxpayer, spouse, and all dependents
  • All tax documents such as Form W-2 and Form 1099
  • Form 1098-T for all college students
  • Bank routing and account number (if you would like direct deposit for your refund)
  • Information for deductions and tax credits
  • Address, ID number, and phone number for a child care provider
  • Last year's tax return

Tax returns will be prepared on a first-come, first-served basis. An estimated length of time for completion of the return can be given at the time of intake. This will be an estimate, and actual time to completion of the tax return could vary based on many factors.

We have developed a secure transmission and temporary storage system for all taxpayer-related documents. Your original documents will be returned to you after they are scanned. You will not leave any original documents with us. Once your tax return has been prepared and submitted to the taxing authorities, all virtual copies of the documents will be permanently deleted from our system.

You will receive instructions on the next steps during your initial visit to Lincoln Trail College. When your tax return has been received by a preparation team, you may receive a phone call from a student if more information is needed. If they do not have questions during the preparation or quality review process, you will return on the designated date.

If the preparation team does not reach you during this attempt, they will leave a message to return the call at your convenience. It is important to return the call to the telephone number provided during the message – NOT to the number that shows in your caller ID. 

When your tax return is finished, you will return to Lincoln Trail College to review your tax return and sign authorizations for us to transmit your tax return to the IRS.

Please note, your tax return will not be filed until you either sign forms, at Lincoln Trail College, authorizing us to submit your return electronically or until the taxpayer mails the return to the taxing authorities if you are not filing electronically.

We are not able to prepare Form 1040-NR. If you are unsure if you are required to file Form 1040 or Form 1040-NR, we can help you make the determination.

Students from Lincoln Trail College's Future Business Leaders of American Collegiate and business students will work with you to prepare your tax return. The students have received training and certification from the IRS to allow them to prepare returns through the VITA program and they are eager to give back to the community by helping others with their taxes. In addition to their interest in business and the community, the students have demonstrated excellent leadership abilities at Lincoln Trail College. Your tax forms will be reviewed by tax professionals before they are returned to you to assure accuracy.

Guiding the program this year is Associate Professor of Business Amie Mayhall, who brings extensive business and tax knowledge to Lincoln Trail College. Also helping with the program is Harlei Payne, MBA.