Accounting Students Provide Tax Assistance

Rebecca Frost checks in a taxpayer needing tax assistance.

Once again this spring, accounting students at the University of Montana provided tax assistance to low-income taxpayers. Under the direction of local CPA Clem Lockman, 42 volunteers prepared 583 federal income tax returns and 577 state income tax returns. Total refunds to taxpayers resulting from the returns filed amounted to $740,676! This is a great opportunity each year for University of Montana accounting students to provide community service.

The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program is a joint program between the University of Montana and the Internal Revenue Service. By participating in the program, accounting students learn how to interact with taxpayers, how to use tax preparation software, and how to electronically file returns. The success of the program is in large part due to the tireless effort of Clem Lockman, who coordinates the program. Clem is a graduate of the University of Montana Master of Accountancy program and has coordinated the UM VITA program for more than 15 years.

Pictured in photo: Rebecca Frost checks in a taxpayer needing tax assistance. Rebecca has been a volunteer in the University of Montana Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program for three years.