50 percent increase over last year; encourages New Yorkers to take advantage of free e-filing for faster refunds
The New York State Department of Taxation and Finance announced Wednesday it has issued $1 billion in refunds, and reminded New Yorkers to use free e-filing options for faster refunds. Already, refunds have been issued to more than 1.1 million taxpayers - a 50 percent increase over last year's total by this date of 776,000.
More than 97 percent of the 3.1 million returns received this year have been e-filed. The average refund for e-filers is issued in 22 days, while refunds for paper filers can take eight to 12 weeks.
"Most New Yorkers are eligible for free e-filing options that result in fewer errors on returns and faster refunds," said Commissioner Thomas H. Mattox. "Visit our website to learn more about the options available to you."
Thus far, $1 billion in refunds have been issued, compared to $669 million last year. The average refund to date is $906.
Free tax preparation and e-filing options
•Have your return prepared by certified volunteers - Taxpayers with incomes under $52,000 are eligible to have an IRS-certified volunteer prepare their return - at no cost. There are more than 400 free tax preparation sites across New York. More information, including a site lookup by ZIP code, is available on the IRS website.
•Visit an AARP Tax-Aide free location - The AARP's 300-plus free tax preparation sites in New York do not have income or age limits. Find a site near you
•Visit the NYS Tax Department website to access free tax preparation software - If your income is under $58,000, you're eligible to prepare your federal and state return using free software. Eligible taxpayers should be sure to access the software from the Tax Department's website to ensure they're not unexpectedly charged to prepare their state return.
•File your state return directly with the Tax Department - Taxpayers who have already filed their federal returns - or who only need to file a state return - can prepare and e-file their New York state return directly with the Tax Department using a new "Web File" option.
With the addition of "Web File," 85 percent of New Yorkers can prepare and e-file their income taxes for free.