News Center > Entergy Texas Customers Can Receive Free Virtual Tax Prep
Entergy Texas Customers Can Receive Free Virtual Tax Prep
THE WOODLANDS, Texas – Qualified Entergy Texas customers can receive free tax preparation at IRS-certified Volunteer Income Tax Assistance this tax season.
As part of the company’s commitment to empower low-income customers, Entergy Texas is once again helping customers who qualify for federal Earned Income Tax Credits claim the money they’ve earned. Entergy Texas is also continuing its partnership with community advocates to support free IRS-certified Volunteer Income Tax Assistance tax preparation services for qualifying customers. Funding for this effort is provided through shareholder contributions and does not impact customer bills.
At local VITA sites, IRS-certified volunteers from Entergy Texas and community partners are available to help residents who earn $57,000 or less determine if they qualify to receive the tax benefits. Qualifying families can receive as much as $6,700 through EITC.
The Earned Income Tax Credit is one of the nation's most effective tools for lifting low-income workers and their families above the poverty line. The federal government estimates EITC lifted 5.6 million people out of poverty, including 3 million children; however, it is estimated that one out of five people who qualify for the EITC fail to claim it. Entergy Texas has helped more than 11,400 households receive over $15 million since 2011.
“Services provided through the VITA program help power lives for our customers, who can gain long-term benefits by claiming the EITC,” said Stuart Barrett, Entergy Texas vice president of customer service. “By putting our customers’ hard-earned money back in their pockets, we are helping improve customers’ lives, creating opportunities and strengthening our communities.”
Qualified customers can get their taxes prepared for free by IRS-certified volunteers at Volunteer Income Tax Assistance tax preparation sites. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many VITA programs are offering drop-off tax preparation services. Contact the provider in your community to confirm available services. VITA site locations are available at entergy.com/freetaxhelp.
Also due to COVID-19, customers may qualify for an Economic Impact Payment, also known as a “stimulus check,” of $1,200. Customers who didn’t receive your stimulus check in 2020 may be able to claim the payment as the Recovery Rebate Tax Credit on their tax return filed in 2021 for tax year 2020.
Free tax preparation services are provided at VITA sites throughout the 2021 tax season. In some VITA locations, local community partners are offering appointments for tax preparation services, drop-off tax prep services, financial coaching, budget workshops, free legal services and more. For more information, visit entergy.com/freetaxhelp.
In addition to assisting qualified customers with free tax preparation, Entergy Texas has also implemented several new bill payment options for customers who may be experiencing financial hardship. Customers that are experiencing financial hardship may be eligible to take up to twelve months to pay their current bill and/or unpaid balances.
The extreme cold temperatures across our region drove increased energy consumption by customers which may lead to higher bills. Learn more about the charges on customer bills and how they are set.
If customers have had their new advanced meter installed, they can login to myEntergy to manage and track their energy usage. Advanced meters allow customers to log into their accounts and view how much electricity has been used daily, shown in 15-minute increments for residential customers, rather than having to wait until the end of the month to view their energy usage. Through the new online tools, customers also will be able to set up alerts when reaching budgetary goals to keep them aware of their monthly spending. Advanced meters are designed to provide customers with more timely usage information so that they can decide whether to reduce consumption in order to reduce their electric bill.
Bill Payment Assistance
If a high bill has already arrived, there are ways customers can get help managing their costs or even paying their bill.
- Deferred Payment Arrangement– Customers experiencing financial hardship due to the pandemic are eligible to take up to twelve months to pay their current bill and/or unpaid balances.
- Level Billing– Entergy Texas will averages a customer’s bill over a rolling 12-month period to provide a consistent bill each month of the year, with no surprises.
- Pick-A-Date –Choose what day of the month to be billed to line up with the customer’s budget and cash flow.
- Power to Care– Through Entergy's The Power to Care program, local nonprofit agencies can provide emergency bill payment assistance to seniors and disabled individuals in crisis. Find out more at entergy-texas.com/bill-help/.
- LIHEAP – The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program is a program that provides money to help people with energy bills and other energy-related expenses. LIHEAP is funded through the federal government and works with community action agencies to help customers pay for and keep electric service in their homes. For information on how to apply for assistance, customers can call or call 877-399-8939 or 877-541-7905 or visit https://tdhca.state.tx.us/community-affairs/ceap/.
For those struggling to pay their utility bills due to the pandemic, Entergy Texas has flexible payment arrangements through its Enhanced Customer Assistance plan. Customers with past-due accounts should contact the company as soon as possible. Entergy has several self-service options for setting up payment arrangements that they can access 24 hours a day:
- visit com/bill-help;
- select ‘deferred payment’ on the free Entergy mobile app; or
- call 1-800-ENTERGY (1-800-368-3749). Press “3” to follow the automated response billing and payment menu.
Customers who need extra assistance can speak with an agent during normal business hours. Call 1-800-ENTERGY (1-800-368-3749) Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.
About Entergy Texas
Entergy Texas, Inc. provides electricity to approximately 473,000 customers in 27 counties. Entergy Texas is a subsidiary of Entergy Corporation (NYSE: ETR), an integrated energy company engaged in electric power production, transmission and retail distribution operations. Entergy delivers electricity to 3 million utility customers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. Entergy owns and operates one of the cleanest large-scale U.S. power generating fleets with approximately 30,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity, including 8,000 megawatts of nuclear power. Headquartered in New Orleans, Louisiana, Entergy has annual revenues of $10 billion and more than 13,000 employees. Learn more at entergy.com and follow @Entergy on social media.