Archive for March, 2011

Revenue Information Bulletin 11-007: Farmer Certification Process

The Louisiana Department of Revenue has issued Revenue Information Bulletin (RIB) 11-007, which addresses the Farmer Certification Process.

In an effort to improve efficiency and simplify certain processes, the Louisiana Department of Revenue has revised its farmer certification process as described in Revenue Information Bulletin No. 09-034. Act 464 of the Regular Session of the 2009 Louisiana Legislature amended the sales tax exemption for farm equipment authorized by Louisiana Revised Statute 47:305.25 to require farmers and agricultural facilities to be certified by LDR in order to document their eligibility for the exemption. Beginning March 1, 2011, the Louisiana Department of Revenue began certifying eligible farmer or agricultural facilities using the R-1070 Application for Certification as a Manufacturer.

Farmers and agricultural facilities will no longer apply for certification using the R-1085 form which has been discontinued.

 Visit revenue.louisiana.gov to read the full text of RIB 11-007.

 

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E-filing surges past 1 million for state tax returns

BATON ROUGE – The Louisiana Department of Revenue (LDR) has received more than 1 million individual state income tax returns filed electronically, the department announced Thursday.  It is the earliest point during a tax filing season that electronically filed returns have crossed the 1 million threshold.  By comparison, the state received 1.3 million electronically filed returns in all of 2010.  So far, 90 percent of all returns filed in 2011 were submitted electronically. 

‘This is a new record,” said Secretary of Revenue Cynthia Bridges.  “It tells us that increasing numbers of Louisiana taxpayers appreciate the benefits of electronic filing. 

Taxpayers who file electronic returns receive their refunds more quickly than those who file paper returns.  The average processing time for electronic returns is 10 days.  For paper returns it is 12 to 16 weeks.

For state government, the benefits of electronic filing are significant.  The cost of processing paper returns is $1 per transaction.  This saves the state more than a million dollars a year. 

There are numerous ways to file individual tax returns electronically with the State of Louisiana.  The free web-based tax filing application Louisiana File Online is available on the LDR website at www.revenue.louisiana.gov/fileonline.  Many commercially available tax filing software packages also offer state filing options.

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Applying for an Extension to File 2010 Louisiana Income Tax Returns

The most efficient, effective method of requesting an extension to file 2010 Louisiana income tax returns is to do so electronically.

For corporation income tax returns, you may use commercially available tax preparation software that supports the electronic filing of the Louisiana Application for Extension to File Corporation Income and Franchise Tax (Form CIFT-620EXT).  If your software does not allow for preparation of Form CIFT-620EXT, the following options are available:

  • Requesting the extension with LDR’s online Bulk Extension Filing application at www.revenue.louisiana.gov/bulkextension.
  • Submitting a paper copy of Form CIFT-620EXT.  This fillable form is available at revenue.louisiana.gov/taxforms.
  • Submitting a paper copy of the IRS Automatic Extension of Time to File Certain Business Income Tax, Information, and Other Returns (Form 7004).  When using this method, be sure to include the Louisiana Corporation Income and Franchise tax account number at the top of the form.

To make a payment with an extension request, you must do so through the commercial software electronic option; the Louisiana Taxpayer Access Point (LaTAP) at www.revenue.louisiana.gov/latap; or with paper copies of Form CIFT-620EXT or IRS Form 7004.  The online Bulk Filing Extension application does not accommodate electronic payments.

Corporation income extension requests for 2010 calendar year returns are due no later than Friday, April 15, 2011.

To request an extension to file a Louisiana Individual Income Tax Return, use one of the following methods:

  • Request an extension using commercially available tax preparation software
  • File an extension request with Louisiana File Online at revenue.louisiana.gov/fileonline
  • Request an extension through the Bulk Extension Filing application
  • Submit a paper copy of Louisiana Form R-2868. This fillable form is available at revenue.louisiana.gov/taxforms
  • Submit a paper copy of IRS Form 4868.

To make a payment with an individual income tax extension request, you must do so through Louisiana File Online, the commercial software electronic option, or with paper copies of Form R-2868 or IRS Form 4868.  The online Bulk Filing Extension application does not accommodate electronic payments.

Individual income extension requests for 2010 tax-year returns are due no later than May 16, 2011.

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IRS open in NOLA and BR for weekend assistance

IRS Taxpayer Assistance Centers will be open in New Orleans and Baton Rouge on Saturday March 26, 2011.

During the expanded Saturday hours, taxpayers will be able to address economic hardship issues, make payment arrangements or get help regarding oil spill issues.

WHAT:           Selected IRS Offices open for Special Saturday Service Day
WHEN:            Saturday, March 26, 20119:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. 
WHERE:         New Orleans

1555 Poydras Street, Suite 270

New Orleans, LA 70112

 

  Baton Rouge

2600 Citiplace Centre

Baton Rouge, LA 70808

 

In addition to IRS help, community organizations partner with the IRS. Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) programs assist people who earned $49,000 or less and Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) programs assist individuals 60 and over with their 2009 income tax return preparation and electronic filing.   Many of these sites have Saturday hours while others offer assistance at various times during the week.  To locate the partner sites in this area call 2-1-1 or 1-800-906-9887.

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IRS holding $20 million in refunds for Louisiana taxpayers, window to claim it closes April 18

The IRS owes more than $20 million to nearly 20,000 Louisiana taxpayers who failed to file federal tax returns for the 2007 tax year.  The average refund amount due Louisiana residents is more than $600. 

The money owed to Louisiana taxpayers is part of more than $1 billion owed to taxpayers nationwide.

“Some people may not have filed because they had too little income to require filing a tax return even though they had taxes withheld from their wages or made quarterly estimated payments,” the IRS announced in a press release.  “In cases where a return was not filed, the law provides most taxpayers with a three-year window of opportunity for claiming a refund. If no return is filed to claim a refund within three years, the money becomes property of the U.S. Treasury.”

The IRS says it owes $20,327,000 to 19,500 Louisiana taxpayers who failed to file 2007 federal returns.  The three-year window means these taxpayers have until April 18, 2011, to file those returns and claim their refunds.

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