Northwest Iowa — It’s tax season, and many people are trying to find ways of getting more in their refund, or having to pay less. If you are an active Iowa volunteer fire fighter, EMT, or paramedic, you can take advantage of a new tax credit. But you’re going to have to wait a year. According to Iowa Department of Revenue Officials, the Volunteer Firefighter & Emergency Medical Services Personal Tax Credit takes effect in Tax Year 2013 for returns filed in 2014.
In order to qualify for the credit a volunteer firefighter must be an active member of an organized volunteer fire department in Iowa, and must meet the minimum training standards established by the Fire Service Training Bureau, a division of the Iowa Department of Public Safety.
If you’re a volunteer emergency medical services provider, you have to be trained to provide emergency medical care, you have to be certified as a first responder, and must have been issued a certificate by the Iowa Department of Public Health.
The tax credit equals $50 if the volunteer serves for the entire calendar year 2013. If the volunteer does not serve the entire year, the $50 credit will be prorated based on the number of months that the volunteer served.
You also have to have a written statement from the fire chief or other appropriate supervisor verifying that you were a volunteer for the number of months that are being claimed. These letters do not have to be attached to a filed return, but must be produced by the taxpayer upon request by the Department of Revenue.
Find more information on the Iowa Department of Revenue web site by clicking here, or ask your tax preparer.