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The City of New Orleans

Mayor Mitchell J. Landrieu

Earned Income Tax Credit

The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is a federal income tax credit for workers who don't earn a high income, and who meet certain eligibility requirements. Taxpayers who qualify and claim the credit can pay less federal tax, pay no tax, or even get a tax refund. Individuals do not need to have children to claim EITC. The maximum amount of the credit for Tax Year 2012 is $5,891. The average amount of EITC credited for 2012 was $2,200.

Basic Qualifications

  • Have a valid Social Security number,
  • Not file as "married filing separate,"
  • Not file Form 2555 or Form 2555-EZ (related to Foreign Earned Income),
  • Meet the investment income limitation ($3,200 or less for tax year 2012),
  • Have earned income,
  • Not be the qualifying child of another person,
  • Generally, be a U.S. citizen or resident alien for the entire year.

Income Restrictions

Earned Income and adjusted gross income (AGI) must each be less than:

  • $45,060 ($50,270 married filing jointly) with three or more qualifying children
  • $41,952 ($47,162 married filing jointly) with two qualifying children
  • $36,920 ($42,130 married filing jointly) with one qualifying child
  • $13,980 ($19,190 married filing jointly) with no qualifying children

Click here for more information about EITC qualifications


2012 Maximum Tax Credit Available

The Maximum Tax Credit Available for 2012 is as follows:

  • $5,891 with three or more qualifying children
  • $5,236 with two qualifying children
  • $3,169 with one qualifying child
  • $475 with no qualifying children

Free Tax Assistance

If your family earned less than $51,000, you may qualify for free tax preparation in addition to the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). Volunteers trained by the Internal Revenue Service can help you file for your full refund, either in person or online at

To find out more about free tax preparation assistance, dial 211 or 1-800-906-9887, or visit the United Way's list of Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites near you. 


Documents Needed

When applying for the Earned Income Tax Credit or visiting a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) site near you, please have the following documents:

  • Photo ID
  • Social Security Cards (for you, your spouse & dependents)
  • Birth dates (for you, your spouse & dependents)
  • Wage & Earning Forms (all W-2, W-2G, 1099-R Forms)
  • Interest & Dividend Forms (Forms 1099)
  • Total Paid for Day Care (provider’s name and tax ID, if applicable)
  • Bank Routing & Account Numbers (for direct deposit of refund; voided check or bank statement will suffice)
  • Spouse (if married and filing a joint tax return, your spouse must be present)


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Last updated: 3/19/2013 11:37:07 AM

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