As Iowans rush to file their federal tax returns by the deadline, many will also file their state returns, which could create a backlog for the Iowa Department of Revenue. The Department is hiring fewer temporary employees to process paper returns due to budget cutbacks. Department spokesperson Renee Mulvey says the extra work is expected to cause a four week delay — which means you could get paid for the delay.
She says if your refund is filed by the state deadline of April 30th, they must pay your refund by June 1st or they will have to pay you interest. Mulvey says you can help by filing electronically. “We will undoubtedly being paying people interest because it does take us longer to process paper returns. Now if people will electronically file that’s not going to happen because they’ll get their refund in less than two weeks,” Mulvey says.
The Department of Revenue asked the Legislature for an additional month to process paper returns without owing interest, but was denied.
Mulvey says so far electronic tax returns are up about three percent over last year, when 74 percent of Iowans chose to file online.