ABERDEEN NORTH CAROLINA
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Latest News - ABERDEEN NORTH CAROLINA

Area Golf: Alamance County Amateur champion moves on in state event


RALEIGH —James Mishoe IV of Cary shot 6-under-par 66 to lead North Carolina Amateur Match Play sectional qualifying ...
In Sunday’s one-day event at Aberdeen, Seth Hall of Greensboro won the men’s “A” Division with 2-under 70 at Legacy Golf ...

Hoops to stripes: Youngster turns down deal with Celtic for football scholarship at prestigious American university


“Duke University and their rivals, the University of North Carolina where Michael Jordan played basketball ...
“There are loads of kids coming out of Celtic, Rangers, Aberdeen, Hearts, Hibs or whoever who could still access this opportunity.”

NFL: Minnesota Vikings CB Jabari Price suspended 2 games


Price has begun his second year in the league. He appeared in 14 games as a rookie in 2014 for Minnesota, playing primarily on special teams after being drafted in the seventh round from North Carolina. Price can participate in all preseason activities ...

Civil Air Patrol members attend Tri-Wing Encampment


This year, in addition to the host wings, members attended from Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, North Carolina, Virginia ...
Members from the Aberdeen Police Department gave the cadets a firsthand look of the equipment they use during the normal ...

Local Girl Scouts named top cookie sellers


Sierra Stefanelli of Aberdeen placed second with 3,169 boxes sold and Xena ...
chief executive officer of Girl Scouts – North Carolina Coastal Pines. “We are excited to honor and celebrate the leaders of this year’s cookie program.”

Aberdeen Proving Ground garrison leadership changes hands


He added sincere thanks to community partners in Aberdeen, Edgewood, Havre de Grace ...
82d Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, North Carolina; University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill ROTC Department; and the 1st Infantry Division, Fort Riley, Kansas.

Local Roundup: Siena basketball standouts Shear, Bernert named to MAAC Hall of Fame


ABERDEEN 3, TRI-CITY 1 >> Steve Laurino’s two-run single ...
to face the Maryland Terrapins, in a rematch of the 2014 NCAA second round, on Sept. 11. The Danes host North Carolina on Sept. 13 in their first home game of the year.

Sampson’s Girl Scouts top cookie sellers


Sierra Stefanelli of Aberdeen, N.C., placed second with 3,169 boxes sold ...
chief executive officer of Girl Scouts-North Carolina Coastal Pines. “We are excited to honor and celebrate the leaders of this year’s cookie program.”

Cookie hawkers


Sierra Stefanelli of Aberdeen placed second with 3,169 boxes sold and Xena ...
chief executive officer of Girl Scouts-North Carolina Coastal Pines. “We are excited to honor and celebrate the leaders of this year’s cookie program.”

Reliance Packaging of Lyndhurst moving to North Carolina


Reliance Packaging, part of the Sigma Plastics Group in Lyndhurst, announced on Tuesday that it will be investing $3.5 million in its existing plant in Aberdeen, North Carolina during the next three years. Aberdeen is located near Southern Pines.

MAN CHARGED OVER ALLEGED FLASHING INCIDENT IN ABERDEEN


LOCALMAN CHARGED OVER ALLEGED FLASHING INCIDENT IN ABERDEEN A 55-YEAR-OLD man has been  charged in connection with an alleged indecent exposure in an Aberdeen community.The alleged incident, invol…

Reasons That Directed Us Towards Rental Apartment In Aberdeen


Picking rental condo for rent had not been a simple test. There were a lot of different rentals we investigated before we discovered this incredible find. Some were truly open that obliged me to top i…
Jobs from Indeed




SPECIAL INFORMATION FOR ABERDEEN

ABERDEEN NORTH CAROLINA: the March employment report reflects a pace of monthly job growth

The March employment report reflects a pace of monthly job growth below the recent trend, coming on the heels of February’s strong report. The unemployment rate was stable, broader measures of unemployment fell, and hourly earnings continued their rise. A range of factors including the weather and the global economic slowdown have affected economic data for the first quarter. The President has been clear that he will continue to push for policies including investments in infrastructure and relief from the sequester that would help ensure the strong underlying longer-term trends persist.

FIVE KEY POINTS IN TODAY’S REPORT FROM THE BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS

1. The private sector has added 12.1 million jobs over 61 straight months of job growth, extending the longest streak on record. Today we learned that total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 126,000 in March, driven by a 129,000 increase in private-sector employment. This particular month’s job gains were below the recent trend, as job growth in a number of industries slowed somewhat (see point 5). Over the past twelve months, the private sector has added 3.1 million jobs, nearly the highest year-over-year growth in the recovery so far.


2. Real aggregate weekly earnings have risen nearly 5 percent over the last twelve months. Real aggregate earnings track the purchasing power of total wages and salaries paid to U.S. private-sector employees, reflecting the combined effects of rising employment, rising wages, and a longer workweek. Aggregate earnings are nearly 7 percent above their pre-crisis peak. Indeed, they have recovered nearly twice their losses during the recession. Year-over-year aggregate earnings growth trended about 2-3 percent at an annual rate in recent years, but has risen to 5 percent year-over-year in recent months as hourly earnings have begun to rise (see point 3).

 


3. Over the past twelve months, rising real hourly earnings accounted for nearly half the increase in real aggregate weekly earnings. The large contribution of rising hourly earnings is a recent trend. Aggregate earnings reached a trough in December 2009, and over the following year-and-a-half, real hourly wages declined. The aggregate earnings increase during that early period was driven by a combination of rising employment and a longer workweek. Over the next three years, both hourly earnings and the workweek were largely stable, with rising employment accounting for 80 percent of the growth in aggregate earnings. Real wage growth over the past year has been a major contributor to the speed-up in aggregate earnings, due to both rising nominal wages and slowing consumer price growth as oil prices have declined. While the recent progress is encouraging, there is more work to do to ensure that real earnings growth is sustained and shared with a broad range of American families.

 


4. The overall share of jobs held by women rose from an average of 48.5 percent in 2001-2007 to 49.3 percent in March 2015. This 0.8 percentage point increase masks substantial variation within industries. Female workers shifted out of smaller industries like financial activities and information services where the female share declined by 3.1 and 3.7 percentage points, respectively and into higher-employment industries like retail trade. Women’s share of employment also increased somewhat in the government sector, where 57 percent of workers are female. Accordingly, women were disproportionately affected by the cuts to government employment that occurred between 2010 and 2013, but they have also disproportionately benefited from net job growth in this sector since mid-2013.

 


5. Job growth in a number of industries fell below recent trends in March. Looking over the 61-month streak of private-sector job growth, March was an especially weak month for mining and logging (-11,000), manufacturing (-1,000), leisure and hospitality (+13,000), and construction (-1,000). The weakness in mining and logging is likely attributable in large part to the recent decline in oil prices. March was a stronger than usual month in retail trade (+26,000) and health care and social assistance (+30,000). Across the 17 industries shown below, the correlation between the most recent one-month percent change and the average percent change over the last twelve months rose to 0.51 from 0.13 last month, remaining somewhat below the average correlation over the past two years.

 


As the Administration stresses every month, the monthly employment and unemployment figures can be volatile, and payroll employment estimates can be subject to substantial revision. Therefore, it is important not to read too much into any one monthly report and it is informative to consider each report in the context of other data as they become available.

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ABERDEEN NORTH CAROLINA tspan:3m ABERDEEN NORTH CAROLINA




Advices to people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) in ABERDEEN NORTH CAROLINA

What is irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)?

Irritable bowel syndrome* (IBS) is a functional gastrointestinal (GI) disorder, meaning that the symptoms are caused by changes in how the GI tract works. The GI tract is a series of hollow organs joined in a long, twisting tube from the mouth to the anus—the opening where stool leaves your body. Food is digested, or broken down, in the GI tract.

The organs of the GI tract

*See the Pronunciation Guide for tips on how to say words in bold type.

IBS is a group of symptoms that occur together, not a disease. Symptoms can come and go repeatedly without signs of damage to the GI tract.

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What are the symptoms of IBS?

The most common symptoms of IBS include pain or discomfort in your abdomen—the area between your chest and hips—and changes in your bowel habits. The pain or discomfort of IBS may be reported as cramping and

  • starts when you have bowel movements more or less often than usual
  • starts when your stool appears looser and more watery or harder and more lumpy than usual
  • goes away after a bowel movement

The changes in bowel habits with IBS may be diarrhea, constipation, or both.

Symptoms of diarrhea are

  • passing stools three or more times a day
  • having loose, watery stools
  • feeling an urgent need to have a bowel movement

Symptoms of constipation are

  • passing fewer than three stools in a week
  • having hard, dry stools
  • straining to have a bowel movement

Some people with IBS have only diarrhea or only constipation. Some people have symptoms of both diarrhea and constipation or have diarrhea sometimes and constipation other times. People often have symptoms after eating a meal.

Other symptoms of IBS are

  • whitish mucus—a clear liquid made by the intestines—in the stool
  • a swollen or bloated abdomen
  • the feeling that you haven’t finished a bowel movement

Women with IBS often have more symptoms during their menstrual periods.

IBS is a chronic disorder, meaning it lasts a long time, often years. However, the symptoms may come and go. You may have IBS if

  • you have had symptoms at least three times a month for the past 3 months
  • your symptoms first started at least 6 months ago

While IBS can be painful, it doesn’t lead to other health problems or damage the GI tract.

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What causes IBS?

Doctors are not sure what causes IBS. Researchers are studying the following possible causes of IBS:

  • Brain-gut signal problems. Signals between your brain and the nerves of your gut, or small and large intestines, control how your gut works. Problems with brain-gut signals may cause IBS symptoms, such as changes in your bowel habits and pain or discomfort.
  • Colon muscle problems. The muscles of your colon, part of your large intestine, may not work normally. The muscles may contract, or tighten, too much. These contractions may move stool through your gut too quickly, causing cramping and diarrhea during or shortly after a meal, or slow the movement of stool, causing constipation.
  • Sensitive nerves. The nerves in your gut may be extra sensitive, causing you to feel more pain or discomfort than normal when gas or stool is in the gut.
  • Mental health issues. Psychological, or mental health, issues such as anxiety or depression may be related to IBS in some people. Stress can make the nerves of your gut more sensitive, causing more discomfort and emotional distress.
  • Infections. A bacterial infection in the GI tract may cause some people to develop IBS.
  • Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth. Normally, few bacteria live in the small intestine. Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth is an increase in the number or a change in the type of bacteria in the small intestine. These bacteria can produce extra gas and may also cause diarrhea and weight loss. Some researchers believe small intestinal bacterial overgrowth may lead to IBS; however, more research is needed to show a link between the two conditions.
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How is IBS diagnosed?

Your doctor may be able to diagnose IBS based on your symptoms. Your doctor may not need to do medical tests or may do a limited number of tests.

Your doctor will ask about your

  • medical history
  • eating habits
  • medicine use

Your doctor will look for a certain pattern in your symptoms. Your doctor can diagnose IBS by using symptom-based standards such as the Rome criteria. Based on the Rome criteria, IBS may be diagnosed if

  • your symptoms started at least 6 months ago
  • you have had abdominal pain or discomfort at least three times a month for the past 3 months
  • your abdominal pain or discomfort has two or three of the following features:
    • Your pain or discomfort improves after a bowel movement.
    • When your pain or discomfort starts, you notice a change in how often you have a bowel movement.
    • When your pain or discomfort starts, you notice a change in the way your stools look.

Your doctor will also conduct a physical exam and may perform blood tests to make sure you don’t have other health problems. IBS can have the same symptoms as other health problems, so more tests may be needed. If any blood tests suggest you may have another health problem, your doctor might also perform the following tests:

  • Stool test. A stool test is used to check stool for blood or parasites, which are tiny organisms found in contaminated food or water. Your doctor will give you a container for catching and storing the stool. You will return the stool sample to your doctor or a commercial facility. The sample will be sent to a lab to check for blood or parasites. Your doctor may also check for blood in stool by examining your rectum—the lower end of the large intestine leading to the anus—during your physical exam.
  • Flexible sigmoidoscopy. Flexible sigmoidoscopy is used to look inside your rectum and lower colon. This test is used to look inside the rectum and lower colon. The test is performed at a hospital or an outpatient center by a gastroenterologist—a doctor who specializes in digestive diseases. Anesthesia is usually not needed. Your doctor will give you written bowel prep instructions to follow at home before the test. You may need to follow a clear liquid diet for 1 to 3 days before the test. You may also need a laxative or enema the night before the test. You may also have one or more enemas about 2 hours before the procedure.

    For the test, you will lie on a table while the doctor inserts a flexible tube into your anus. A small camera on the tube sends a video image of the intestinal lining to a computer screen. The test can show problems in the rectum or lower colon that may be causing your symptoms.

    You can usually go back to your normal diet after the test, though you may have cramping or bloating during the first hour after the test.
  • Colonoscopy. Colonoscopy is used to look inside your rectum and entire colon. The test is performed at a hospital or an outpatient center by a gastroenterologist. You’ll be given a light sedative and possibly pain medicine to help you relax. Your doctor will give you written bowel prep instructions to follow at home before the test. You may need to follow a clear liquid diet for 1 to 3 days before the test. You may need to take laxatives and enemas the evening before the test.

    For the test, you will lie on a table while the doctor inserts a flexible tube into your anus. A small camera on the tube sends a video image of the intestinal lining to a computer screen. The test can show problems in your colon that may be causing your symptoms.

    Cramping or bloating may occur during the first hour after the test. Driving is not permitted for 24 hours after the test so that the sedative can wear off. Before the appointment, you should make plans for a ride home. By the next day, you should fully recover and go back to your normal diet.
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How is IBS treated?

Irritable bowel syndrome is treated by relieving symptoms through

  • changes in eating, diet, and nutrition
  • medicine
  • probiotics
  • psychological therapy

You may have to try a few treatments to see what works best for you. Your doctor can help you find the right treatment plan.

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Eating, Diet, and Nutrition

Eating large meals can cause cramping and diarrhea in some people with IBS. If you experience these symptoms, try to change your eating patterns by eating four or five small meals a day.

Certain foods or drinks may make symptoms worse, such as

  • foods high in fat
  • some milk products
  • drinks with alcohol or caffeine
  • drinks with large amounts of artificial sweeteners, which are used in place of sugar
  • beans, cabbage, and other foods that may cause gas

To find out if certain foods trigger your symptoms, keep a diary and track

  • what you eat during the day
  • what symptoms you have
  • when symptoms occur

Take your notes to your doctor and talk about which foods seem to make your symptoms worse. You may need to avoid these foods or eat less of them.

Fiber may improve constipation symptoms caused by IBS because it makes stool soft and easier to pass. Fiber is found in foods such as whole-grain breads and cereals, beans, fruits, and vegetables. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics recommends that adults consume 21 to 38 grams of fiber a day.

While fiber may help constipation, it may not be enough to treat the abdominal discomfort or pain of IBS. In fact, some people with IBS may feel a bit more abdominal discomfort after adding more fiber to their diet. Add foods with fiber a little at a time to let your body get used to them. Too much fiber at once can cause gas, which can trigger symptoms in people with IBS.

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Medicine

Your doctor may give you medicine help relieve symptoms. Follow your doctor’s instructions when you use medicine to treat IBS. Talk with your doctor about possible side effects and what to do if you have them.

These medicines can lessen the symptoms of IBS:

  • Laxatives treat constipation. Many kinds of laxatives are available. Your doctor can help you find the right laxative for you.
  • Loperamide (Imodium) treats diarrhea.
  • Antispasmodics help reduce muscle spasms in the intestines and help ease abdominal pain.
  • Antidepressants in low doses can help relieve IBS symptoms.
  • Lubiprostone (Amitiza) is prescribed for people who have IBS with constipation.
  • Linaclotide (Linzess) is also prescribed for people who have IBS with constipation.

The antibiotic rifaximin can reduce bloating by treating small intestinal bacterial overgrowth; however, scientists are still debating the use of antibiotics to treat IBS and more research is needed.

Probiotics

Probiotics are live microorganisms—tiny organisms that can be seen only with a microscope. These microorganisms, most often bacteria, are like the microorganisms normally found in your GI tract. Studies have found that probiotics taken in large enough amounts improve symptoms of IBS; however, more research is needed. Probiotics can be found in dietary supplements, such as capsules, tablets, and powders, and in some foods, such as yogurt. Talk with your doctor before using probiotics, supplements, or any other complementary or alternative medical treatment. Read more at www.nccam.nih.gov/health/probiotics.

Psychological Therapy

Psychological therapy can help improve IBS symptoms.

  • Talk therapy. Talk therapy may reduce stress and improve IBS symptoms. Two types of talk therapy used to treat IBS are cognitive behavioral therapy and psychodynamic, or interpersonal, therapy. Cognitive behavioral therapy focuses on your thoughts and actions. Psychodynamic therapy focuses on how your emotions affect your IBS symptoms.
  • Gut-directed hypnotherapy. In hypnotherapy, a therapist may help relax the muscles in your colon by putting you into a trancelike state.
  • Mindfulness training. Mindfulness training can teach you to focus your attention on sensations occurring at the moment and to avoid catastrophizing, or worrying about the meaning of those sensations.
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Does stress cause IBS?

Although stress does not cause IBS, if you already have IBS, stress can make your symptoms worse. In addition, simply having IBS symptoms can produce stress.

Learning to reduce stress can help improve IBS. With less stress, you may find you have less cramping and pain. You may also find it easier to manage your symptoms.

Meditation, exercise, hypnosis, and counseling may help lessen IBS symptoms. Getting enough sleep and changing life situations to make them less stressful may also help. You may need to try different activities to see what works best for you.

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Points to Remember

  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a functional gastrointestinal (GI) disorder, meaning symptoms are caused by changes in how the GI tract works.
  • IBS is a group of symptoms that occur together, not a disease. Symptoms can come and go repeatedly without signs of damage to the GI tract.
  • The most common symptoms of IBS include pain or discomfort in your abdomen—the area between your chest and hips—and changes in your bowel habits.
  • While IBS can be painful, it doesn’t lead to other health problems or damage the GI tract.
  • Doctors are not sure what causes IBS. Researchers are studying the following possible causes of IBS:
    • brain-gut signal problems
    • colon muscle problems
    • sensitive nerves
    • mental health issues
    • infections
    • small intestinal bacterial overgrowth
  • Your doctor may be able to diagnose IBS based on your symptoms. Your doctor may not need to do medical tests or may do a limited number of tests.
  • IBS is treated by relieving symptoms through
    • changes in eating, diet, and nutrition
    • medicine
    • probiotics
    • psychological therapy
  • Although stress does not cause IBS, if you already have IBS, stress can make your symptoms worse.
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Hope through Research

The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases’ (NIDDK’s) pision of Digestive Diseases and Nutrition conducts and supports basic and clinical research into many digestive disorders.

Clinical trials are research studies involving people. Clinical trials look at safe and effective new ways to prevent, detect, or treat disease. Researchers also use clinical trials to look at other aspects of care, such as improving the quality of life for people with chronic illnesses. To learn more about clinical trials, why they matter, and how to participate, visit the NIH Clinical Research Trials and You website at www.nih.gov/health/clinicaltrials. For information about current studies, visit www.ClinicalTrials.gov.

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Pronunciation Guide

abdomen (AB-doh-men)

abdominal (ab-DOM-ih-nuhl)

antidepressants (AN-tee-dee-PRESS-uhnts)

antispasmodics (AN-tee-spaz-MOD-iks)

anus (AY-nuhss)

chronic (KRON-ik)

cognitive (KOG-nih-tiv)

colon (KOH-lon)

colonoscopy (KOH-lon-OSS-kuh-pee)

constipation (KON-stih-PAY-shuhn)

diarrhea (DY-uh-REE-uh)

enema (EN-uh-muh)

flexible sigmoidoscopy (FLEK-suh-buhl) (SIG-moy-DOSS-kuh-pee)

functional (FUHNK-shuhn-uhl)

gastroenterologist (GASS-troh-EN-tur-OL-uh-jist)

gastrointestinal (GASS-troh-in-TESS-tin-uhl)

hypnotherapy (HIP-noh-THAIR-uh-pee)

interpersonal (IN-tur-PUR-suhn-uhl)

intestines (in-TESS-tinz)

irritable bowel syndrome (IHR-ih-tuh-buhl) (boul) (SIN-drohm)

laxative (LAK-suh-tiv)

mucus (MYOO-kuhss)

probiotics (PROH-by-OT-iks)

psychodynamic (SY-koh-dy-NAM-ik)

psychological (SY-koh-LOJ-ih-kuhl)

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For More Information

American Neurogastroenterology and Motility Society
45685 Harmony Lane
Belleville, MI 48111
Phone: 734–699–1130
Fax: 734–699–1136
Email: admin@motilitysociety.org
Internet: www.motilitysociety.org

International Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders
700 West Virginia Street, Suite 201
Milwaukee, WI 53204
Phone: 1–888–964–2001 or 414–964–1799
Fax: 414–964–7176
Email: iffgd@iffgd.org
Internet: www.iffgd.org

Rome Foundation, Inc.
P.O. Box 6524
Raleigh, NC 27628
Phone: 919–539–3051
Fax: 919–900–7646
Email: mpickard@theromefoundation.org
Internet: www.romecriteria.org

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Acknowledgments

Publications produced by the Clearinghouse are carefully reviewed by both NIDDK scientists and outside experts. This publication was reviewed by Douglas A. Drossman, M.D., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Thank you also to the Salvation Army, SE Corps, Washington, D.C., for facilitating field-testing of the original version of this publication.

The U.S. Government does not endorse or favor any specific commercial product or company. Trade, proprietary, or company names appearing in this document are used only because they are considered necessary in the context of the information provided. If a product is not mentioned, the omission does not mean or imply that the product is unsatisfactory.

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National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse

2 Information Way
Bethesda, MD 20892–3570
Phone: 1–800–891–5389
TTY: 1–866–569–1162
Fax: 703–738–4929
Email: nddic@info.niddk.nih.gov
Internet: www.digestive.niddk.nih.gov

The National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse (NDDIC) is a service of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK). The NIDDK is part of the National Institutes of Health of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Established in 1980, the Clearinghouse provides information about digestive diseases to people with digestive disorders and to their families, health care professionals, and the public. The NDDIC answers inquiries, develops and distributes publications, and works closely with professional and patient organizations and Government agencies to coordinate resources about digestive diseases.

This publication is not copyrighted. The Clearinghouse encourages users of this publication to duplicate and distribute as many copies as desired.

This publication may contain information about medications and, when taken as prescribed, the conditions they treat. When prepared, this publication included the most current information available. For updates or for questions about any medications, contact the U.S. Food and Drug Administration toll-free at 1–888–INFO–FDA (1–888–463–6332) or visit www.fda.gov. Consult your health care provider for more information.


NIH Publication No. 13–4686
September 2013

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Page last updated October 16, 2013

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Earned Income Tax Credit Awareness Day in ABERDEEN NORTH CAROLINA

The U.S. Treasury Department’s State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI) today released a new Quarterly Report detailing how the program continues to help small businesses grow and create jobs. Since the beginning of the program, the Treasury Department has disbursed more than $1.1 billion to participating states.

The Internal Revenue Service is partnering with community-based organizations across the country to promote Earned Income Tax Credit Awareness Day, an effort to alert millions of low and moderate-income workers who may be missing out on a significant tax credit that can be as much as $6,000.

Millions of workers who earned $52,427 or less last year may qualify for EITC for the first time in 2015, making awareness of the credit critical. About a third of the people eligible for EITC fluctuate each year based on changes to their marital, parental and financial status. All across the United States, local officials and community organizations are holding events highlighting this key benefit.

“About four out of five eligible workers and families get the credit they earned. That leaves millions missing EITC every year,” said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. “It’s an important credit and one of the government’s best tools to fight poverty.”

Last year, almost 28 million eligible workers and families received $66 billion total in EITC, with an average EITC amount of $2,400.

The IRS website is a valuable first stop to help taxpayers get it right this filing season, from information on claiming the EITC, to learning about the Affordable Care Act (known as the health care law), to finding free tax help. The IRS encourages everyone to use the EITC Assistant on IRS.gov/eitc, an interactive tool to find out if they are eligible for the credit. The IRS website also provides helpful information on the health care law and how it may affect tax returns at IRS.gov/aca. There is also an interactive tool that helps individuals determine if they are eligible for the premium tax credit. And qualified taxpayers may also find a free tax return preparation site on IRS.gov/vita.

The amount of EITC varies depending on income, family size and filing status. Those who work for someone else or those who run a business or farm and who earned $52,427 or less during 2014 could receive larger refunds if they qualify for the EITC. This could mean up to $496 in EITC for people without children, and a maximum credit of up to $6,143 for those with three or more qualifying children.

The EITC is refundable. This means those eligible may get a refund from the IRS even if they owe no tax or had no taxes withheld from their paycheck.

Workers potentially eligible to claim the credit should visit IRS.gov/eitc to learn if they qualify, how to claim the credit and more. The EITC Assistant will also determine their filing status, if they have a qualifying child or children and estimate the amount of the EITC they could get. If an individual doesn’t qualify for EITC, the Assistant explains why and a summary of the results can be printed.

Get the Credit — How to Claim the EITC

To get the EITC, workers must file a tax return, even if they are not legally required to file, and specifically claim the credit. Free tax help is available to those eligible for the EITC:

The Internal Revenue Service is partnering with community-based organizations across the country to promote Earned Income Tax Credit Awareness Day, an effort to alert millions of low and moderate-income workers who may be missing out on a significant tax credit that can be as much as $6,000.

Millions of workers who earned $52,427 or less last year may qualify for EITC for the first time in 2015, making awareness of the credit critical. About a third of the people eligible for EITC fluctuate each year based on changes to their marital, parental and financial status. All across the United States, local officials and community organizations are holding events highlighting this key benefit.

“About four out of five eligible workers and families get the credit they earned. That leaves millions missing EITC every year,” said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. “It’s an important credit and one of the government’s best tools to fight poverty.”

Last year, almost 28 million eligible workers and families received $66 billion total in EITC, with an average EITC amount of $2,400.

The IRS website is a valuable first stop to help taxpayers get it right this filing season, from information on claiming the EITC, to learning about the Affordable Care Act (known as the health care law), to finding free tax help. The IRS encourages everyone to use the EITC Assistant on IRS.gov/eitc, an interactive tool to find out if they are eligible for the credit. The IRS website also provides helpful information on the health care law and how it may affect tax returns at IRS.gov/aca. There is also an interactive tool that helps individuals determine if they are eligible for the premium tax credit. And qualified taxpayers may also find a free tax return preparation site on IRS.gov/vita.

The amount of EITC varies depending on income, family size and filing status. Those who work for someone else or those who run a business or farm and who earned $52,427 or less during 2014 could receive larger refunds if they qualify for the EITC. This could mean up to $496 in EITC for people without children, and a maximum credit of up to $6,143 for those with three or more qualifying children.

The EITC is refundable. This means those eligible may get a refund from the IRS even if they owe no tax or had no taxes withheld from their paycheck.

Workers potentially eligible to claim the credit should visit IRS.gov/eitc to learn if they qualify, how to claim the credit and more. The EITC Assistant will also determine their filing status, if they have a qualifying child or children and estimate the amount of the EITC they could get. If an individual doesn’t qualify for EITC, the Assistant explains why and a summary of the results can be printed.

Get the Credit — How to Claim the EITC

To get the EITC, workers must file a tax return, even if they are not legally required to file, and specifically claim the credit. Free tax help is available to those eligible for the EITC:

  • Free File on IRS.gov. Free brand-name tax software walks people through a question and answer format to help them prepare their returns and claim every credit and deduction for which they are eligible. Free File also provides online versions of IRS paper forms, an option called Free File Fillable Forms which is best suited for taxpayers comfortable preparing their own returns.

  • Free tax preparation sites. EITC-eligible workers can seek free tax preparation at thousands of Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) and Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) sites. Taxpayers can locate the nearest site using a search tool on IRS.gov or through the IRS2go smartphone application.

    It is important for taxpayers to bring along all the required documents and information to make sure they get the EITC they deserve. Also, those who bought coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplace should receive Form 1095-A, Health Insurance Marketplace Statement, from their Marketplace in early February. It’s important to also bring the Form 1095-A to the volunteer site. Any taxpayer who does not receive it by early February should contact their Marketplace, not the IRS. The IRS will not have access to the information on the form.

Like last year, the IRS expects to issue more than nine out of 10 refunds within 21 days. The IRS reminds taxpayers that the fastest way to get a refund is to e-file their tax return and choose direct deposit. It takes longer to process paper returns. Because of budget cuts resulting in a smaller staff, it will likely take an additional week or more to process paper returns, meaning that those refunds are expected to be issued in seven weeks or more. Taxpayers can track the status of their refund with the “Where’s My Refund?” tool available on IRS.gov or on IRS2go.

Similar Benefits Available Through the Health Care Law

The Affordable Care Act requires that a taxpayer and each member of his or her family have qualifying health insurance coverage for each month of the year, qualify for an exemption from the coverage requirement, or make an individual shared responsibility payment when filing a federal income tax return.

Premium Tax Credits: If taxpayers bought coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplace, they should receive Form 1095-A, Health Insurance Marketplace Statement from their Marketplace by early February. They should save this form because it has important information needed to complete their tax returns. 

If a taxpayer is expecting to receive Form 1095-A and has not received it by early February, they should contact the Marketplace where the coverage was purchased. Due to the fact that the IRS does not have this information, it is recommended that taxpayers contact the appropriate marketplace.

Anyone who benefited from advance payments of the premium tax credit must file a federal income tax return. The taxpayer will need to reconcile those advance payments with the amount of premium tax credit they’re entitled to based on actual income. As a result, some people may see a smaller or larger tax refund or tax liability than they were expecting. When filing their return, taxpayers will use IRS Form 8962, Premium Tax Credit (PTC), to calculate the premium tax credit and reconcile the credit with any advance payments.

Reporting requirements: Most taxpayers will simply check a box on their tax return to indicate that each member of their family had qualifying health coverage for the whole year. No further action is required. Qualifying health insurance coverage includes coverage under most, but not all, types of health care coverage plans. Taxpayers can use the chart on IRS.gov/aca to find out if their insurance counts as qualifying coverage.  

Exemptions: A taxpayer may be eligible to claim an exemption from the requirement to have coverage. If eligible for an exemption, the taxpayer will need to complete the new IRS Form 8965, Health Coverage Exemptions and attach it to their return. The individual must apply for some exemptions through the Health Insurance Marketplace.  However, most of the exemptions are easily obtained from the IRS when filing a tax return.  

Individual Shared Responsibility Payment: If an individual does not have qualifying coverage or an exemption for each month of the year, they will need to make an individual shared responsibility payment when filing their return for choosing not to purchase coverage. Examples and information about figuring the payment are available on the IRS Calculating the Payment page. More information about the Affordable Care Act and the 2014 income tax return is available at IRS.gov/aca.

Get It Right

Taxpayers are responsible for the accuracy of their tax return even if someone else preparers it for them. The rules for EITC are complicated. The IRS urges taxpayers to seek help if they are unsure of their eligibility, whether from a paid tax professional or at a free tax return preparation site. Deliberate errors can have lasting impact on future eligibility to claim EITC and leave taxpayers with a penalty.

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