Louisiana taxpayers have choices for state income tax refunds

BATON ROUGE – Louisiana taxpayers can choose between three methods of payment for state income tax refunds. 

Taxpayers who file their state income taxes electronically can select direct deposit, a paper check, or the Louisiana MyRefund Card, a pre-loaded debit card that can be used to withdraw cash at ATMs or bank teller windows, shop and pay bills online, or make purchases and get cash back at retail registers.

New to the paper state income tax return (Form IT-540) this year is the option of selecting a paper check for your refund, in addition to the MyRefund Card.  Taxpayers who do not select a refund method on the paper form will receive the debit card.

The Louisiana Department of Revenue (LDR) encourages electronic filing for all income tax returns.  It is the method that provides the fastest processing time for refunds.  Electronic filers receive their refunds within an average of ten business days.  Paper filers can expect to wait at least three months.  Electronic filing options include commercially-available tax preparation software and Louisiana File Online, the state’s free tax filing web application.  Visit www.revenue.louisiana.gov/fileonline.

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Your Money, Your Choice

If you’re expecting a state income tax refund, you can choose direct deposit, a paper check, or the Louisiana MyRefund Card.

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Louisiana taxpayers receive more than half-billion dollars in state individual income tax refunds

BATON ROUGE – The Louisiana Department of Revenue (LDR) has distributed more than half a billion dollars in individual state income tax refunds to Louisiana taxpayers for the 2011 tax year.

As of Friday, April 20, the total of individual income tax refunds was $534,031,761.11.  The average refund amount was $438.12.

“We’re processing returns faster, getting taxpayers their money back faster, and doing it at less cost to the state than ever before,” said Secretary of Revenue Cynthia Bridges. “This is due, in large part, to the growing use of electronic and online filing.”

To date, LDR has processed more than 1.5 million individual income tax returns that were filed electronically.  This is ten weeks earlier than the same benchmark was reached in 2011.

Electronic filing methods include LDR’s free online filing system, Louisiana File Online, and a variety of commercially available software applications.

Seventy percent of this year’s refunds, $374.6 million, have been distributed via direct deposit.  Direct deposit is available only to taxpayers who file their taxes electronically.  It is the fastest, most secure method of refund distribution.

The next largest amount of refunds went out via the Louisiana MyRefund Card, a pre-paid debit card used to distribute refunds mostly to taxpayers who file paper returns.  Taxpayers have received $134.2 million through the MyRefund Card program.

Taxpayers receiving paper checks have received $25.1 million in refunds for this tax season.

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Louisiana taxpayers receive $420 million in state income tax refunds; Over 1 million refunds issued through MyRefund Card and Direct Deposit

BATON ROUGE – The Louisiana Department of Revenue (LDR) has issued more than 1 million individual income tax refunds for income tax returns submitted for the 2011 tax year.  

As of Thursday, April 05, 2012, LDR had issued 1,012,143 individual income tax refunds for a total amount of $419,965,483.23.  The average refund amount is $414.93. This is one week earlier than the department crossed the million-refund threshold in 2011. “We are pleased that we have been able to process refunds more quickly this year. This is due in large part to an increasing number of taxpayers who have taken advantage of our electronic filing options,” said Secretary of Revenue Cynthia Bridges.

Ninety-one percent of Louisiana individual income tax refunds processed so far were submitted electronically via methods such as Louisiana File Online and commercial tax preparation software.  The remaining nine percent were filed with the printed state income tax return.

So far, 65 percent of this year’s refunds were distributed via direct deposit and 35 percent via the Louisiana MyRefund Card or check. 

“Although the majority of recipients seem to be embracing the MyRefund Card, direct deposit still remains the fastest and most popular method for Louisiana taxpayers to receive their refunds,” Secretary Bridges said.

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WBRZ-TV: ‘Tax refunds available as debit cards’

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LDR introduces pre-paid MyRefund card for state income tax refunds

BATON ROUGE – Louisiana taxpayers who do not choose direct deposit for their state income tax refunds will receive those refunds in the form of a pre-paid debit card, the Department of Revenue announced Monday.

The Louisiana MyRefund Card permits free teller-assisted withdrawals at all banks and credit unions that accept visa; it allows unlimited no-fee cash-back transactions at retail merchants;  and it allows no-fee cash withdrawals at all ATMs operated by Chase, the vendor bank issuing the card. In addition, MyRefund card holders can manage the funds in their refund accounts entirely online.  Online services include the ability to check card balances for free, online bill pay, and the ability to issue oneself a paper check for the full card balance.

Taxpayers who prefer checks can also call or visit any LDR office for assistance.  However, they must do so before activating the MyRefund card.

“Security and convenience are the primary benefits of the MyRefund Card,” said Secretary of Revenue Cynthia Bridges.

The card is inactive when it arrives by mail.  The recipient must call a toll-free number to activate it with uniquely identifying personal information.

LDR will issue the MyRefund Card to taxpayers who file paper individual state income tax returns and to individual electronic filers who do not choose direct deposit for their refunds. 

 Information is available at www.revenue.louisiana.gov/myrefund.

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