Direct deposit easier option for income tax returnsInland Revenue department’s officials Beville Clarke (sitting) and Marvin Ishmael (right) explaining the online process.
By Marlon Madden | Tue, April 24, 2012 - 12:00 AM
The Inland Revenue Department (IRD) is encouraging more Barbadians to choose the option of direct deposit as opposed to cheques when filing income tax returns.
Acting deputy commissioner, Tyrone Lavine, said there were benefits to be derived from choosing the direct deposit option, including an early refund.
He was addressing a group of people at the St Leonards Boys’ School recently during one of the department’s town hall meetings.
The meetings were designed to sensitize the public about the importance of early filing, filing online as well as to strengthen relations between residents and the department.
“We are pushing the whole concept of direct deposit. So if you are fortunate enough to be getting a return, we recommend that you opt for the direct deposit,” said Lavine.
Project manager Marvin Ishmael, speaking on several issues relating to information technology, urged residents to use the direct deposit since sending out cheques could be time consuming.
“We encourage you to choose the option for your refund going directly to the bank. Processing cheques take a lot of time; we have to print the cheques, process them, and put them in envelopes and send them to you [through the mail], and that takes up a considerable amount of time,” he said.
“In terms of the direct deposit, we just need to prepare a file and send to the bank and when the bank receives that file, automatically, your refund will be there for you on your bank account. But, of course, if you do not fill out the information correctly . . . you will be sent a cheque.”
‘Give banks two weeks’
The IRD said following the closing date for filing returns – April 30 – the department will assess the information “in bulk” on a “first filed, first served” basis.
Ishmael said when residents checked on the status of their refunds and saw “refund granted” they should not go rushing off to the bank.
“Give the banks at least two weeks. We are getting a lot of complaints from the banks that taxpayers have been bombarding them saying that the Inland Revenue said the funds were granted but then when they go to the bank the refund is not there.”
Residents were also made aware of the various changes that would have taken effect for 2012 filing year in relation to amendments to the Income Tax Act including the penalty of $500 for late filing. (MM)
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