The Star-Ledger

Your N.J. Tax Refund May Be Delayed This Year, State Says

The Star-Ledger — January 24, 2017

By Matt Arco

TRENTON — New Jerseyans who file early tax returns and expect to get a check from the state in short order will have to wait longer this year, the Department of Treasury announced.

Refunds for 2016 won't be doled out until as early as March 1, the agency said.

The delay effectively doubled the time it will take early filers to receive their returns, said Ann Vardeman, program director for New Jersey Citizen Action, which offers free tax preparation to low-income households.

Vardeman told 101.5FM news that February tax filings used to be paid in as little as two weeks.

According to treasury, returns filed electronically may take a minimum of four weeks to validate and process and paper returns will take a minimum of 12 weeks.

The delays will mean slower returns for everyone — not just people who file early.

The department attributed the delays to "additional tools" to protect against fraud.

"These enhanced efforts could result in early filers experiencing a slight delay in receiving their refunds," the agency said in a statement. "Processing returns and distributing refunds safely and efficiently is a key goal for the Division. We appreciate your patience."

New Jerseyans can check the status of their returns online by visiting the Division of Taxation's website.

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