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Financial Assistance & Taxes



Many individuals and families in the San Diego region face financial obstacles that prevent them from a healthy and quality life. We can help people access financial assistance and public benefits to help them get back on their feet. Call 2-1-1 to learn more about available resources.  

Earned Income Tax Credit

The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is a refundable cash-back tax credit for low-income working families and individuals. It is one of the most effective tools in America to lift families out of poverty.

California joined 24 other states and the District of Columbia to adopt a state EITC, known as CalEITC, to supplement the federal EITC. In its first year, the CalEITC boosted the income of about 385,000 people, who received close to $200 million from the credit. If you qualify for CalEITC and have a child under the age of 6, you may be eligible for the Young Child Tax Credit (YCTC).

Who is Eligible?

Eligibility for both the federal and state EITC is based on your earned income and you must file a tax return to qualify, whether you are required to or not. For tax year 2021, families and individuals who earned wages or self-employment income up to $30,000 may qualify for CalEITC. If your wages are more than $30,000, you may still be eligible for the federal EITC.


  • Workers with incomes up to $30,000
  • Individuals and families whose income does not require them to file taxes
  • Families with children age six and under
  • Working older adults ages 65+
  • Young adults ages 18-24
  • Self-employed workers
  • Undocumented ITIN filers who are otherwise eligible


Review the chart below to see how much you may get when you file your tax year 2021 return.

2021 EITC
Number of qualifying children California maximum income CalEITC (up to) IRS EITC (up to)
None $30,000 $255 $1,502
1 $30,000 $1,698 $3,618
2 $30,000 $2,809 $5,980
3 or more $30,000 $3,160 $6,728


Get Your Cashback Credits!

Interested in getting money back this tax season? Call 2-1-1 to learn more!

FREE Tax Preparation

Don’t pay to have your taxes prepared! If you earned less than $58,000, call 2-1-1 to schedule a no-cost tax assistance appointment at a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) site! Due to COVID-19, additional safety protocols will be in place at in-person sites. Select sites will also offer drop-off and drive-up services.

Visit myfreetaxes.org/online for free online self-filing. There is no income limit to file online.

Avoid a Tax Penalty

Effective January 1, 2020, California residents must maintain minimum essential health care coverage for themselves and their dependents. You may have to pay a penalty when filing your tax return unless you have minimum essential health care coverage.

Subsidies are available through Covered California and we can help you find a plan that fits your needs and budget.

Learn More   Get Covered

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