CHICAGO – The Illinois Department of Revenue reminded taxpayers that there are less than two weeks before the traditional April 15 filing deadline.
To date, the Department has processed almost 3.2 million tax returns and has issued more than $745 million in tax refunds. Taxpayers who file their returns electronically receive their refunds much faster than those who file paper returns.
More than 93 percent of taxpayers have filed their taxes electronically, and of those, more than a quarter million used the free WebFile program at tax.illinois.gov. Taxpayers using the Department’s website to file their state returns have the option of direct deposit of refunds or having refunds put on pre-paid debit cards, to avoid the cost of check cashing services. More than 2,000 taxpayers received a debit card as part of this year’s pilot program.
“I am pleased Illinois taxpayers are finding our electronic services helpful,” said Brian Hamer, State Revenue director. “In times like these, when families are struggling, we need to do everything we can to get tax refunds to taxpayers quickly and easily.”
WebFile, the state’s interactive filing program, walks taxpayers through all of the options for credits and deductions and is available for free to Illinois tax filers. This is particularly helpful to families eligible for the Earned Income Credit or education credits. To date, more than 681,000 families in Illinois have filed for EIC and they have received credits of almost $131 million. WebFile also ensures that senior citizens get the full benefits allowed under the law by clarifying which pensions or benefits payment are tax-free on their Illinois income taxes.
Taxpayers can file electronically in one of three ways:
• WebFile — Taxpayers can file for free at tax.illinois.gov.
• Tax professionals — Taxpayers can tell their tax preparer to file their return electronically.
• Tax preparation packages — Taxpayers who purchase a tax preparation package can file it online instead of printing and mailing a return.
IDOR continues to encourage taxpayers to file electronically on its website tax.illinois.gov or ask about E-Filing when they visit their tax preparer. Electronic filing is fast, easy and, by reducing the use of paper, is environmentally friendly.