by: Jim Strickland Updated:
ATLANTA - Your state tax refund could take up to three months to process this year even if you file electronically.
State Revenue Commissioner Lynne Riley said the delay will be caused by extra precautions in place to stop scam artists.
“In 2017, we're going to keep our guard up and protect the taxpayers every way we can,” Riley said.
The Georgia Department of Revenue says use of a new software and verification system could mean delays of up to 90 days for some refunds as the state double-checks returns.
"We have successfully blocked over $78 million in refunds fraudulently filed with us," said Revenue Commissioner Lynne Riley. "It's frightening, which is all the more reason we're going to make every effort we protect our taxpayers."
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Businesses must file W-2 payroll information one month early, by the end of January to help speed the verification process. GDOR will start processing returns two weeks later than usual.
There will be no direct deposit offered for first-time Georgia filers.
“The most important thing to us is that we get tax dollars back in the rightful recipient's hands,” Riley said.
Taxpayers are also urged to register with the state to be alerted when a return is filed with their Social Security number.
"If they get a notification and they haven't filed yet, that's a trigger that the return is fraudulent," said Riley.
Nearly five million individual returns are expected for TY 2016.
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