If you're just a dang overachiever and like setting the bar far to high for us regular people you can go ahead and file your income taxes beginning today. The Louisiana Department of Revenue says today is the first day of the filing period for taxpayers who owe money or believe they are owed a refund. Federal returns are due on April 15th while state returns will not be delinquent until after May 16th.

Kizzy Payton a spokesperson for the LDR told the Louisiana Radio Network that filing electronically is the best way to proceed. She also suggests that if you do seek help from a tax preparation specialist that you choose that person carefully.

We tell them to make sure they ask questions about a tax preparer. That they ask their family and friends about who prepared their taxes and actually ask those tax preparers for references.

Payton did make this one point very clear in her comments about using a paid tax expert.

When a taxpayer actually signs that return, it becomes their responsibility so if any money is owed back to the state, they will be held responsible, not necessarily that tax preparer.

In other words, don't just sign  your return believing that your tax professional got the information correct. It is your responsibility to double check their work and at review it before you sign your name.

Payton suggested that more and more people are choosing to file their taxes electronically for security reasons and for convenience. Those who file electronically know that their return has been received and not lost in the mail. This also makes getting a refund easier too since tax refunds can be directly deposited.