Bank of Hope has given California State University, Northridge $25,000 to support the university’s income tax preparation assistance program for low-income families and individuals.
The money will support the operations of CSUN’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Clinic during the 2019 tax season. In addition to the money, bank employees have volunteered to serve as interpreters and greeters at many of the clinic’s sites throughout Los Angeles.
“The CSUN VITA Clinic is deeply grateful for Bank of Hope’s continued support of our free tax preparation services,” said accounting professor Rafi Efrat, director of CSUN’s VITA Clinic and Bookstein Low Income Taxpayer Clinic. “With their help, the CSUN VITA Clinic is able to continue expanding and serving a greater number of low-income taxpayers in the San Fernando Valley. Aside from the financial support, Bank of Hope’s employees have demonstrated exceptional commitment to service by joining our various clinics and providing valuable assistance to taxpayers. This unique partnership enhances our ability to deliver a more wholesome experience to the taxpayers we serve.”
Kevin Kim, president and CEO of Bank of Hope, said the bank was “delighted to have this opportunity to provide funding to assist individuals with their income tax reporting requirements, while at the same time providing students with real-life tax compliance experience.”
CSUN’s VITA Clinic began offering its services to low-income members of the public on Jan. 28. Its program will run through April 13 at CSUN and satellite locations throughout Los Angeles County. VITA Clinic locations can be found at vita.csun.edu.
Headquartered in Los Angeles, Bank of Hope has been providing financial services to the largest Korean-American community in the country for nearly four decades. Today, Bank of Hope serves a multiethnic population of customers through 64 full-service branches across nine states; eight Loan Production Offices add a presence in two additional states.
Launched in 1971, the CSUN VITA Clinic, located in CSUN’s David Nazarian College of Business and Economics, serves as a valuable community partner that is responsive to the culturally diverse San Fernando Valley. While there is a maximum gross income limit per tax return, it’s usually set by the IRS at $54,000, about the average income of a Los Angeles resident.
More than 450 CSUN student volunteers completed intensive training on handling federal and state tax returns. In addition to providing service to the community, the CSUN VITA Clinic also gives students an opportunity to gain knowledge and experience in their field of study.
For more information about CSUN’s VITA Clinic, including locations and qualification for its services, visit its website at vita.csun.edu.