The City of High Point is gearing up for its Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program.

The program is designed to provide free income tax preparation services to eligible people and families. Tax returns aren’t due until April each year – or October for those who, like many reporters and editors, get extensions every year – however, in order for High Point to put on a successful program, the city is looking for some kind-hearted and qualified volunteers right now, even though Christmastime is hardly a time for people to be thinking about bah humbug income taxes.

The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program sites will be accessible at various High Point locations starting in late January 2021. Individuals and families who earn under $57,000 are eligible to take advantage of the service.

The tax preparation services are offered free of charge by IRS-certified tax preparers. For those taxpayers who use the program, their forms are filed electronically and, High Point officials say, customers could have their entire refund deposited into their checking or saving account as soon as a week after filing.

According to a press release from the city announcing the 2021 program and seeking volunteers, the goal of the program is to “provide professional tax preparation services to qualified households at no cost and provide households with financial education and resources that will empower them to maximize their refunds so that they continue to thrive.”

High Point is now recruiting volunteers to help out as tax preparers, interpreters, quality reviewers, appointment schedulers and greeters.

All volunteers will receive training by IRS-certified tax instructors.

Volunteers can work weekdays, weeknights and Saturdays with flexible hours. Virtual volunteer positions are available. Those interested should email VITA@highpointnc.govto register for one of two virtual volunteer information sessions that will be held on Saturday, Dec. 12 and Saturday, Dec. 19, both at 10 a.m.