Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes
NBC's Jennifer Johnson reporting Millions of low-income Americans are eligible for BIG tax credits and may not even know it.
Now, the I-R-S is on a nationwide campaign to let working Americans know about the Earned Income Tax Credit program.
Brenda Dobbs is a single, working mom and this just may be her lucky day. Dobbs and her son have come to the dc cash tax preparation center which prepared her tax return for free. She's now eligible for a big Refund from the IRS's earned income tax credit program, or E.I.T.C.
"So your total refund is 2-thousand, seven-hundred, nineteen on the federal return."
Dobbs qualified for the E.I.T.C. because she works, but makes less than $38,000. The IRS says the tax credit has been around for years, but many who are eligible don't know it.
Mark Everson, IRS Commissioner: "Over 22-million people claimed the E.I.T.C. last year and it helped lift millions out of poverty...it, the E.I.T.C., can really transform a family's life."
Across the country, there are thousands of community service sites providing free tax help, but also programs that teach money management.
Melvin Hardy, Senior Tax Specialist IRS: "A lot of individuals get these refunds back and what they realize is they get a lot of money for the first time and many of them are unbanked, meaning they have never banked before, never opened up a checking account."
Brenda Dobbs says she has signed up for an asset building course.
Brenda Dobbs, Tax Credit Recipient: "I plan to save a little bit...I need a new car so I'm trying to save for a new car."
Another step toward building a better life...a success story the IRS Hopes can be shared by millions of others if they claim the credit. The IRS says the EITC is it's largest cash assistance program targeted for low income Americans and they want those eligible to take advantage of it.