Tax Season 101
BATON ROUGE - The Louisiana Department of Revenue began accepting state individual tax returns today, as did the Internal Revenue Service. This morning on 2une In we were joined by the LDR's Director of Criminal Investigations Barry Kelly who had some tips to survive Tax Season 2015.
"You need to be very careful about who you choose to be your preparer," he explained to News 2's John Pastorek. "It's okay if you prepare your own returns, but if you don't, you need to make sure you trust the individual you select. You're giving your identity to someone else, and they can do with it what they will."
He recommends choosing someone who's part of an organization that requires ethics and training and is knowledgeable of tax law changes. If someone fails to request information like your yearly earnings, Kelly says that could be a red flag you need to choose someone else.You should also review a copy of the return before it's sent in to make sure all the information is accurate.
"Another thing you need to do is make sure they sign-off before it's submitted," he cautioned. "You need to hold them accountable for their work."
Other common mistakes Kelly says people make are not being selective when choosing a preparer and providing information that causes the return to be flagged as suspicious. If that happens, you'll be notified. The LDR urges you to respond as quickly as possible if you don't want you return to be delayed.
The Department of Revenue will begin processing returns on Feb. 3 and will start issuing refunds on Feb. 24.
Following the initial Feb. 24 refund date, the expected refund processing time for returns filed electronically is up to 21 days. For paper returns, taxpayers should expect to wait eight to 10 weeks.
Watch the video for more information.
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