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Taxpayers May Face Delay In Receiving State Tax Refund Checks

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RALEIGH — More than 3.5 million people filed state tax returns this year. The state owes some taxpayers money this year, but the check may be a little slow getting in the mail.

Thanks to the booming economy, the state is having problems distributing refund checks.

"We had difficulty recruiting temporary employees who are very important in our processing," says Reggie Hinton of theNorth Carolina Department of Revenue. "By virtue of not being able to staff those appropriately, it has caused some delay."

Hinton says normally people can expect their refund within eight weeks if they filed in February, 10 weeks in March or 12 weeks if they filed in April, but due to the delay, taxpayers can add a week.

Carlene Logue took the traditional route and filed in February.

"With me getting a refund and it being very simple, I decided to mail it this time thinking I would get a quick turnaround, but so far I haven't gotten it back," Logue says.

Electronic filers can expect to wait four weeks, although some receive refunds in just five days. Sheila Brown is one of the people who filed electronically.

"I'm also trying to buy a home so getting fast money was definitely something I needed to do," Brown says.

Taxpayers can actually make money if the state is slow. If you get your refund 45 days or more after April 17, the state will add a little something extra to it.

"Any refund not processed within 45 days of that date, we would begin paying interest at the rate of 8 percent," Hinton says.

However, Hinton says the department processes the majority of the returns in time to meet the deadline.

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Lynda Loveland, Reporter
David Renner, Photographer
Kamal Wallace, Web Editor

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