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DEFIANCE — Tax season has begun and many Van Wert County residents are thinking about how they will file their tax returns. This year the Northwestern Ohio Community Action Commission (NOCAC) is working to help low and middle income taxpayers save money on tax preparation fees and keep more of their refund in their pockets.

NOCAC has partnered with the Ohio Benefit Bank to offer free basic tax preparation services for individuals with less than $65,000 in total income. In Van Wert County, services are available at the Community Services Building, in the NOCAC office. Tax clinics are also offered in other sites throughout Northwest Ohio, some offering evening and weekend appointments.

OBB tax counselors assist taxpayers in filing their federal, state and school district returns through an online program available at Additionally, this program is also able to electronically file tax returns with the IRS and can help direct deposit refunds into the client’s bank account, helping connect tax payers with their refunds faster. There is no charge for any of these services.

Last year, NOCAC, in collaboration with various community partners, prepared over 900 tax returns for clients who received more than $1.5 million in refunds. This number includes over $100,000 clients saved in preparation fees. This program is in its fifth year at NOCAC.

Tax clinics begin Feb. 1. For more information or to make an appointment at any of our sites, call NOCAC’s central office at (419) 784-2150 extension 1100.