The Kentucky Department of Revenue earlier this week began processing tax returns again after temporarily holding electronically filed returns because of questionable returns being filed through Intuit Inc.’s TurboTax program. As reported nationally, many states have encountered the same issue. At this point, Kentucky’s processing schedule has returned to normal.
“We worked closely with Intuit to identify returns that were suspicious based on similar patterns and additional screening criteria,” said Tom Miller, commissioner of the Kentucky Department of Revenue.”
As of Thursday afternoon, Intuit had identified approximately 300 suspicious returns. The department is reviewing those returns and has confirmed approximately 50 returns as being fraudulent. Less than $6,000 has been identified as having already been refunded. The department will pursue remedies to recover those funds.
Since e-filing started on Jan. 20, the Department of Revenue has received more than 575,000 individual returns. Filing electronically is still safe and the quickest way for taxpayers to get their refund, normally within seven to 10 days.
The department is sending letters to affected taxpayers encouraging them to contact the Department of Revenue Taxpayer Assistance line at (502) 564-4581. They may also want to contact the IRS to determine if any activity has impacted their federal return.
“With our internal fraud detection processes and the fraud analytics capabilities of our third party vendor, each year we are better able to identify fraudulent returns,” said Miller. “This newest fraudulent activity just means we must work with other states and tax preparation programs to see what new trends are out there.”
Intuit Inc. has set up a dedicated call center, (800) 944-8596, for customers to call if they believe they have been victims of tax fraud.
Electronic filing in Kentucky has been available to individuals since the 1995 tax year. It is the only way to have a refund direct deposited. In the last 5 years, e-filing for individuals has increased from 65 percent to more than 84 percent in 2014.