In the 2017 tax season, SaveYourRefund will once again offer tax filers the chance to win cash prizes for saving a portion of their tax refunds. Now in its fifth year, SaveYourRefund is a partnership between Commonwealth and America Saves.
The SaveYourRefund campaign provides fun and exciting incentives for Americans to save at tax time, when households making less than $50,000 claim $100 billion in federal tax refunds. More than half of all Americans have no savings to help them cope with even small emergencies. Yet more than 100 million taxpayers get refunds from the IRS each year, which offers the perfect opportunity to get an emergency fund started. For many individuals and families, that tax refund is the largest check that they will receive all year. A chance to win a $25,000 grand prize or one of 100 smaller prizes has proven to be enough to turn saving skeptics into savings winners.
Commonwealth and America Saves look forward to continuing to expand the reach and impact of SaveYourRefund in 2017. The campaign is offered through a nationwide network of Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites, where taxpayers can learn about the prizes and get free help filing returns. Assistance and information will also be available through other VITA, volunteer, and community offices and online at www.SaveYourRefund.com.
“We’re thrilled to continue our partnership with America Saves and look forward to another exciting year of fun and prizes at tax time in 2017,” said Commonwealth Executive Director Tim Flacke. “Even a small amount of money saved can make a big difference. SaveYourRefund helps tax filers all over the country to take an important step on the pathway to financial security.”
Over 9,000 entrants have saved more than $7.5 million through SaveYourRefund since 2013.
“SaveYourRefund provides an opportunity and an extra motivation for tax filers to get a jumpstart on saving at the critical moment when so many are preparing to receive a tax refund,” said Nancy Register, America Saves Director. “We work with individuals and partner organizations all across the country that are looking for just such an opportunity. We are so pleased to work with Commonwealth to make that possible again this year.”
The winner of the 2016 Grand Prize Photo Contest, Ebony Brown-Parks, had entered SaveYour Refund every year since its inception. She committed to saving for herself and her family even in times of financial challenge and uncertainty. Last tax season, Ebony entered SaveYourRefund by purchasing a $50 U.S. Savings Bond for her daughter. Her story of financial resilience is an inspiration and Commonwealth and America Saves were delighted to award her the $25,000 Grand Prize.
Ebony says, “You never think this stuff will happen to you. It feels good to win because I try to do the right thing. Income goes up and down – especially with my layoff – and one of the things I really care about is being financially secure.”
Watch an inspiring video of Mary Bunch, a previous SaveYourRefund grand prize winner, telling her story.
If you work with a tax site and are interested in becoming a partner, visit the SaveYourRefund website to learn more and sign up. Anyone who wants to help promote SaveYourRefund and saving at tax time can check out a new blog post from America Saves, which shows how you can get involved by spreading the word.