Marine Corps Logistics Base ALBANY Ga. --
Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany’s Tax Center, located in Building 3500, Room 10, has been providing tax services for nearly a month.
Within the short time, Marine volunteers have assisted numerous military personnel, reservists, retirees, and their families with tax advice and electronic filing of state and federal tax returns.
“The Tax Center has filed 206 federal and 176 state tax returns and secured more than $452,500 in returns for service members, their families, and retirees,” Gunnery Sgt. Morgon W. Latimore, staff noncommissioned officer-in-charge, Tax Center, said. “So far this tax season, the center has saved the Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany community $15,000 in preparation fees.”
There are six Marines working in the center and each one has undergone a one-week tax preparation training course to learn how to prepare 1040, 1040A, 1049EZ, Georgia Form 500, and other forms, according to Latimore.
For Sgt. David O. Silvia, Volunteer Income Tax Assistance representative, this is his first time working in the Tax Center.
“I enjoy helping people and ensuring they are getting a professional and accurate tax return,” he said. “I want to make sure the tax payers get as much money back as they rate.”
Silvia said working in the center has given him a broader understanding of the tax system and he is more confident in preparing his own taxes.
Gunnery Sgt. Jon Swan, amphibious assault vehicle repairman with Supply Management Center, Marine Corps Logistics Command, said Silvia was very knowledgeable in preparing tax for the military, especially when it came to state taxes.
He said he used the Tax Center because the services are free and it saved him from having to pay hundreds of dollars in processing fees.
“If we went to a tax place in town, it would have cost us $200 or more per state and an additional $200 for filing federal taxes,” he said.
Swan’s wife, Shelley, said Silvia was familiar with the Military Spouses Residency Relief Act.
The MSRRA, signed in November 2009, changes some basic rules of taxation with respect to military spouses, who earn income from services performed in a state in which the spouse is present with his or her service member pursuant to military orders and that state is not the spouse’s legal residence, according to http://www.jag.navy.mil/organization/documents/tax/TIM%2002-10%20Encl%202.pdf.
Military spouses generally will not have to pay income taxes to that state. Depending on the laws of the domiciliary state, the spouse may be required to pay income tax to the domiciliary state, according to the website.
Swan said the “by appointment only” system made it easier and faster because the tax representatives were ready for their customers and there was no waiting.
Silvia shared some tax advice to help expedite the process.
“Ensure you have all the appropriate documentation including Social Security card for family members and a power of attorney for those who are filing jointly if the spouse is not able to be present,” he said. “Having the proper documentation will help the center file the tax return so taxpayers will receive their refund quicker. Not having the right paperwork will cause a delay in the taxpayers return.”
The 2012 tax season ends April 17. The center’s hours of operation are Mondays through Fridays, 8-11:30 a.m. and 1-4 p.m. by appointment only. For more information, call (229) 639-6186.