Use free resources and services to promptly receive refunds owed
Guest Editorial by the New York State Tax Department
The New York State Department of Taxation and Finance encourages taxpayers to prepare for income tax filing season by reviewing some important tips that can ease the process and ensure accurate returns and promptly issued refunds.
“We are committed to fair and efficient tax administration, which means all returns are analyzed by our advanced processing system to detect errors and fraud,” said Acting Commissioner Nonie Manion. “To ensure your return sails through this process and any refund owed is issued promptly, review these tips and all the resources on our website at www.tax.ny.gov.”
•E-file for free. A large percentage of New Yorkers qualify to electronically prepare and file both their federal and state income tax returns for free. Last year, more than 155,000 taxpayers took advantage of the free-filing options available on the Tax Department website, and close to 92 percent e-filed their returns, speeding refunds.
•File early. Don’t put it off until the last minute. Filing in a rush can lead to errors that will delay any refund you may be owed.
•Save a tree. E-filing is safer and more efficient than sending paper returns through the mail. Nearly 92 percent of all New York state personal income tax returns are electronically prepared and filed. All returns, whether filed electronically or on paper, undergo the same systematic review.
•File for free. Taxpayers with adjusted gross household incomes of $66,000 or less in 2018 may access free, user-friendly software from their computer, smartphone or tablet at www.tax.ny.gov (search: Free File). The tax preparation software helps prevent filing errors and processing delays. It may also help you find potentially valuable credits you may have missed.
•Access your Account Summary. This page provides a central location for viewing details of your tax account. You can view prepayments to accurately report on your tax return when filing. This includes estimated tax payments made throughout the year as well as payments made with your extension of time to file.
•File on time. To avoid penalties and interest, file on time. The penalties are much higher for late filing than for late payment.
•Use direct deposit. Receive any refund due up to a week faster by having it directly deposited into your bank account. Be sure to double check the routing and account numbers for your account.
•Check your refund online. If you’re eager to find out the status of your claim for an income tax refund, use the “Check your Refund” app on our website: www.tax.ny.gov. It’s the fastest and most convenient way to know when to expect your refund. You’ll need to enter the refund amount you're claiming, your Social Security number, and which form you filed.