tax-season-2016Tuesday, the Indiana Department of Revenue and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) opened the 2016 individual income tax filing season and began processing individual income tax returns. Tax season will close April 18, 2016.

The department encourages taxpayers to electronically file their tax returns. Advantages to filing electronically include faster refunds through e-filed returns are processed in 14 days, while a paper return can take up to 12 weeks to process.  Electronic returnees have increased security because fewer people see your information when you file electronically, they are more accurate with an e-filed return have a two percent error rate compared to a 20 percent error rate for paper-filed returns and the free filing options with nearly two million Indiana taxpayers qualifying to file their federal and state income taxes online for free using Indiana freefile (INfreefile). Taxpayers can visit to see if they qualify and get started.

The Indiana Department of Revenue once again will implement the Identity Protection Program. Since its inception in 2014, the Identity Protection Program has stopped more than $100 million in fraudulent tax refund attempts.

Taxpayers with individual income questions may call 317-232-2240. Phone lines are open weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., except for holidays. This phone line also supports Spanish speaking taxpayers.  The department has 12 district offices across the state where taxpayers can ask individual income tax questions, pay tax bills and submit paper tax returns. Appointments are not necessary. The department cannot prepare individual income tax returns. District office contact information is available

Taxpayers also can submit general questions through the department’s Facebook or Twitter pages. Taxpayers should never send personal information, such as a Social Security number, through social media.