The Louisiana Department of Revenue begins accepting state income tax returns today. There are several ways to file, including electronically on the LDR website. Spokesperson Bryon Henderson says it’s the easiest and safest way to file.

"We've implemented enhanced security measures to protect Louisiana taxpayers from identity theft and other types of tax fraud.   If you file electronically, you can expect your tax refund in about 60 days."

If you decide to use a tax preparer to file your return, there are several things the Department of Revenue wants you to be aware of. Henderson says it’s important to find a reputable taxpayer. Before signing, Henderson urges you to double check your information and meet with the taxpayer in person.

"You are responsible for the information on your tax return, even if you use a third-party preparer to prepare and file it for you."
Henderson says taxpayers can minimize delays in getting their refunds by making sure their personal information with the Department of Revenue is current.
"That includes you name, your address and your telephone number.  If you have moved or if you changed your name since your last tax filing, visit our website and update your contact information."

Their website is revenue.louisiana.gov/fileonline. The final day to file is May 15th. Federal income tax returns can be filed starting today also, with a filing deadline of April 17th.