FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 18, 2016
Mary Ann Dunwell, Public Information Officer, Montana Department of Revenue, (406) 444-6700, MDunwell@mt.gov
Molly Petersen, Public Information Specialist, Montana Department of Revenue, (406) 444-4331, MollyPetersen@mt.gov
Montana Department of Revenue offers tax filing reminders, thanks for state’s quality of life
HELENA – Today, April 18, is the deadline for filing state income taxes. The Montana Department of Revenue thanks taxpayers for filing on time and offers these tax reminders.
“We understand the work that taxpayers put into filing their taxes, and we sincerely appreciate everyone who takes the time to do it,” says Mike Kadas, Director of the Department of Revenue.
State tax revenue helps fund a number of the services that Montanans rely upon and enjoy. Public education, clean water and air, parks and recreation, public health and safety, road construction and maintenance, higher education, and protection of people and property through our correction and justice systems – these services exist thanks to state tax revenue. Explanations and distribution of tax revenue are detailed in the department’s Biennial Report, available on revenue.mt.gov under Publications.
“When Montanans sit down to fill out their returns, they’re investing in the quality of life that we all enjoy,” Kadas says. “Everyone who pays taxes can feel a sense of pride that they contributed to the vital services the state provides - that every child in this state can get an education, that we have safe roads to drive on, that we have clean water to drink.”
Taxpayers who need filing assistance can call the department toll free at (866) 859-2254, or in Helena at 444-6900, or can email their questions to DORCustomerAssistance@mt.gov. Call center staff are available today, April 18, until 8 p.m. This tax season the call center has answered over 50,000 calls and over 3,000 emails. Regular call center hours year round are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Taxpayers can file electronically using the department’s Taxpayer Access Point (TAP) or one of many commercial e-filing products. For electronic filing options, visit revenue.mt.gov and click Online Services. Taxpayers have until midnight on April 18 to file electronically and meet the filing deadline. Paper returns need to be postmarked by April 18 or hand-delivered to Revenue’s Helena office in the Mitchell Building, 125 N. Roberts, by 5 p.m. Taxpayers can also pay their taxes electronically through TAP or Income Tax Express on revenue.mt.gov under Online Services with a bank account withdrawal or a debit or credit card.
In addition to contacting the department’s call center, taxpayers can receive assistance by visiting the Mitchell Building in Helena, 125 North Roberts, until 4 p.m., or at the department’s offices in Missoula at 2681 Palmer Street.
To check the status of their refunds, taxpayers can go online to the Department of Revenue website at revenue.mt.gov/online_services/wheres-my-refund and read the Where’s My Refund FAQs. These questions and answers help taxpayers check the status of their refunds on Taxpayer Access Point. Taxpayers who file their state income taxes electronically typically receive their refunds faster than those who file by paper. Some refunds could take a little longer this year due to extra security and review procedures following an increase in fraudulent tax return filings. Since this tax season opened on January 19, the department has blocked 273 fraudulent returns totaling $345,095.
April 18 is also the deadline for the 2EC, an income tax credit for qualifying Montana homeowners or renters age 62 or older who may receive up to a $1,000 refundable tax credit, even if they do not have to file an income tax return. Eligibility for this program is based on age, residency, income and the amount paid in rent or property taxes. Elderly homeowners and renters may be able to claim refunds for up to five previous years. The 2EC form is online at revenue.mt.gov under Property Assessment, Property Tax Relief.
So far, the department has processed more than 423,493 individual income tax returns for the 2015 tax year and issued nearly 319,953 refunds averaging $421. Last year, the department processed a total of 421,855 returns by the April deadline. Information about tax filing extensions is in the Form 2 and 2EZ tax booklets. Remember that a filing deadline extension is not a payment deadline extension and late fees and penalties can apply.
The Department of Revenue also encourages and appreciates public comments and suggestions regarding the department’s quality of service. “Please tell us how we’re doing,” Kadas says. “We rely on public feedback to ensure that we’re offering Montanans the best service possible.”
Molly A. Petersen
Public Information Specialist
Montana Department of Revenue
It pays to follow Revenue on Twitter: @MTRevenue