South Plainfield Observer

PSE&G Encourages Eligible Working Families To Apply For Tax Credit

1 in 4 Eligible New Jerseyans Fail to Claim the Tax Credit

South Plainfield Observer — February 8, 2020

By Yarrow Willman-Cole

NEWARK, N.J. — Public Service Electric and Gas Company (PSE&G), New Jersey's largest utility, has joined state and local social service agencies in urging workforce members who are in financial difficulty to see if they are eligible for the 2019 Earned Income Tax Credit and to take advantage of legitimate, free tax preparation services. EITC is a special credit that reduces the amount of taxes owed by eligible workers and sometimes provides a tax refund.

Depending on their income, individuals who worked full- or part-time or were self-employed in 2019 may qualify for the credit, regardless of whether they are married or have children. New parents, foster parents, and grandparents raising grandchildren all may be eligible. Some families, including those raising children with disabilities and those in the military, often do not know that special rules may make them eligible.

"We're appealing to the public to claim this credit if they are eligible, and also to let their friends and family know about it and several other programs that can make a big difference," said Fred Daum, PSE&G executive director, Customer Operations. "Those interested in learning more should visit a community partner that provides free, tax preparation services such as one of the largest, the New Jersey Citizen Action Economic Security Center."

PSE&G is participating in a NJCA news conference about tax preparation at 10 a.m. today at their Halsey Street center in Newark. The center is one of several Volunteer Income Tax Assistance sites for families whose household incomes are less than $60,000. VITA information is available by calling 211 or visiting www.nj211.org.

Eligible individuals can receive a federal EITC ranging from $529 to $6,557 and a state credit ranging from $206 to $2,557. EITC refunds do not count as income when applying for benefits such as food assistance, Medicaid or public housing. More EITC information, including criteria and credit estimates, is available on www.njeitc.org.

New Jersey residents should know that those eligible for the New Jersey EITC must file a state resident income tax return, even if they have no tax liability to New Jersey and do not usually file a state tax form. The New Jersey Division of Taxation reports that some 583,000 eligible people received EITC for tax year 2018, yet about 25 percent of eligible New Jerseyans did not apply for the tax credit.

PSE&G includes EITC information on the company's website via www.pseg.com/help and in customer bill messages. Several of PSE&G's 16 Customer Service Centers display EITC information and information on other payment assistance programs, including the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program.

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