The 2019 SaveYourRefund campaign will once again give tax filers across the country the chance to win cash prizes for saving a portion of their tax refunds.
Now entering its seventh year, SaveYourRefund provides fun and exciting incentives for Americans to build financial security at tax time. In addition to giving away 100 prizes of $100 throughout tax season, the campaign will award two grand prizes of $10,000 each through a photo and caption contest in which tax filers share their motivation for saving.
SaveYourRefund is a partnership between Commonwealth and America Saves. Since 2013, over 15,000 entrants have saved $13 million through SaveYourRefund.
“Many people receiving a tax refund have mentally spent those dollars,” said George Barany, America Saves Director. “SaveYourRefund encourages people to think differently about their refund as a jumpstart to their emergency savings account or to paying off a high-cost debt. By melding free tax preparation with encouragement and incentives, local tax preparers are on the front lines of changing people’s minds about their ability to save.”
Nearly half of all Americans do not have enough savings to cope with even small emergencies, yet more than 100 million taxpayers get refunds each year and households making less than $50,000 claim $100 billion in federal tax refunds. For many households, that tax refund is the largest lump sum that they will receive all year. This windfall provides the perfect opportunity to start or build on a savings habit, and the chance to win a prize has proven to be a powerful motivator for saving.
“SaveYourRefund helps tax filers take a critical step on the path to financial security. Saving even a small amount can make a big difference and can give people the sense of hope and confidence that allows them to take advantage of opportunities and plan for the future,” said Commonwealth Executive Director Tim Flacke.
SaveYourRefund is offered through a nationwide network of partner organizations, including Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (or VITA) sites, where taxpayers can learn about the promotion and get free help filing their tax returns. Assistance and information will also be available through other VITA, volunteer, and community organizations and online at www.SaveYourRefund.com.
The winners of the 2018 Grand Prize Photo Contest, Cassandra from New Hampshire and Tara from Massachusetts, filed their taxes for free through local VITA partners Granite United Way and The River Center. Their inspiring stories of saving for their families, their communities, and their dreams led to their selection from over 700 submissions.
“Saving money enables me to be more self-reliant and gives me greater peace of mind,” said Tara. “I am also setting an example of financial responsibility and preparedness for the younger generations.”