We encourage you to look at these references as you work on your training! Be sure to follow your specific certification path for detailed steps regarding how to certify as a volunteer.
The IRS Link & Learn Taxes E-Learning is now up and running for the upcoming training season! To get started: visit that site, click on the certification path tab, select that you are a “Student” and choose your certification course, then get started by perusing all the online lessons (slide-by-slide) under the “in this section” sidebar on the right.
We highly recommend that you download/bookmark these IRS materials and refer to them when working on your certification exams:
- IRS Pub 4012 – Volunteer Resource Guide (PDF) (UP-TO-DATE. Version 10/2019)
- IRS Pub 4491 – Training Guide (PDF) (UP-TO-DATE. Version 10/2019)
- IRS Pub 6744 – Volunteer Test/Re-test (PDF) (UP-TO-DATE. Version 10/2019)
- IRS Pub 4491-X (PDF) (AWAITING UPDATE FROM IRS. Version 11/2018) – Lists corrections and updates to all of the above publications that came out in October/December.
- IRS Pub 17 – Tax Guide (PDF) (AWAITING UPDATE FROM IRS. Version 1/30/2019) – Handy reference.
Other IRS/Federal Publications:
- Pub 5157A Affordable Care Act (ACA) Scenarios (PDF) (AWAITING UPDATE FROM IRS. Version 10/2018) – Practice scenarios for working with clients with different types of health coverage.
- VITA Tax Return Quality Review Job Aid (PDF) (AWAITING UPDATE FROM IRS. Version 10/2018).
OPTIONAL: Foreign Student (FS) Certification
Foreign Student Certification is optional but your site may be looking for volunteers that have obtained this specialty certification! You’ll want to first contact your Site Coordinator to see if they need volunteers with this certification. If you’re up for obtaining this specialty certification, visit our Foreign Student Certification – Training Material webpage for more information.
OPTIONAL: Health Savings Account (HSA) Certification
- IRS Pub. 4942 – Specialty Course: Health Savings Account (HSA) (AWAITING UPDATE FROM IRS. Version 10/2018.) – Reference to read that will help you train for the HSA Exam.
State Tax Law
While you will not be tested on state information, it is important that you know how to handle things in the state return. Please refer to these resources from the CA Franchise Tax Board:
- CA State Tax Law Training Slide Deck (PDF) (AWAITING UPDATE FROM CA FTB. Version 1/2019) – Slides made by CA FTB for State Training on Saturday, January 26, 2019
- CA State Tax Law Training – RECORDING – Video of Shawntae Tyler from CA FTB talking about CA State Tax Law
- CA FTB – Volunteer Training Videos – Videos made by the CA FTB about federal and state tax matters.
- Test Your State Knowledge – Do a knowledge check about CA-specific matters!
- FTB Resource Page – Landing page for all CA FTB resources related to VITA.
- FTB 5130 – VITA/TCE California Volunteer Reference Manual (PDF) (AWAITING UPDATE FROM CA FTB. Version 1/2019)
- CA 540 booklet (PDF) (AWAITING UPDATE FROM CA FTB. Version 1/2019)