Department of Revenue to Begin Processing Individual Income Tax Returns on February 1, 2018

January 12, 2018
Due to the continued threat of tax fraud, and specifically an ongoing email phishing scam, the Department of Revenue (DOR), is taking action to protect taxpayer's sensitive identity information and precious tax dollars in the State of Georgia. In addition to upgrading the state-of-the-art fraud management system, which blocked over $212 million in fraudulently filed refund requests from being released in 2017, DOR will begin processing individual income tax returns on February 1, 2018

As a reminder, businesses must file their employee W-2 information with both the Department of Revenue and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) by the January 31, deadline. The filing deadline to submit 2017 tax returns is Tuesday, April 17, 2018, rather than the traditional April 15 date. In 2018, April 15 falls on a Sunday, and the following Monday is a holiday in the District of Columbia.

Reminders for both individuals and businesses:
 
Individuals:
  • DOR will begin processing 2017 individual income tax returns on February 1, 2018.
  • It may take more than 90 days from the date of receipt by DOR to process a return and issue a refund.
  • All first-time Georgia income tax filers, or taxpayers who have not filed in GA for at least five years, will receive their refund in the form of a paper check.
Businesses:
  • Businesses must file employee W-2 information with DOR by January 31.
  • Employers who file late may face penalties, and will slow the processing of their employees' tax returns.
"Combatting tax fraud is especially important considering the amount of personal information that has been compromised over the past few years with several large-scale data breaches," said DOR Commissioner Lynne Riley, "Receiving employee W-2 information from businesses by January 31, greatly increases the Department's confidence when issuing individual income tax refunds."
 
The DOR also has been working with the IRS, the tax industry and other state revenue departments as part of the Security Summit initiative to continue strengthening processing systems to protect taxpayers from identity theft and refund fraud. The DOR and Summit partners continue to improve these safeguards to further protect taxpayers filing in 2018.