Thousands of Rhode Islanders still waiting for tax refunds

Closeup of the corner of a tax bill, isolated on white.
Closeup of the corner of a tax bill, isolated on white.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Months after the majority of tax refunds have been issued, 14,000 Rhode Islanders are still waiting for their tax refunds.

According to Neena Savage, acting tax administrator, the state has issued 448,531 refunds worth about $262.9 million. She said that number seems reasonable compared to last year.

“The vast majority of taxpayers who have not received their refunds either there are errors or they have been flagged for potential fraud,” said Savage.

“We’re at 99.9% of where we were last year,” she stated. “We’ve received more returns this year than last year, and we expect to be completed by the year’s end and be right on target.”

Tabitha Enos is one of the 14,000 who has yet to receive a refund. She’s hoping that the $71.35 she is owed makes it her way this week. The state is adding on another $1.15 in interest for the wait.

“I’ve lived here 10 years, and this is the longest I’ve been waiting,” she said.

Some delays can be attributed to the heightened fraud screening which is part of the Division of Taxation’s computer system upgrade. Almost $2 million dollars worth of fraud has been identified so far, half a million dollars more than last year.

Phase three of the upgrade is scheduled for next month. This will affect services at the Division of Taxation for a few days. For more information visit the Rhode Island Department of Revenue Division of Taxation website.