Thousands of Oregonians are facing delays receiving state tax returns because they've been flagged for manual processing by the Department of Revenue.
A new, more robust fraud detection system at the Department, along with data breaches identified by the Internal Revenue Service have caused more than double the normal amount of manual reviews.
Returns are flagged for manual review if the state computer systems suspect tax fraud or other errors. Some people who didn't realize their information was made vulnerable by a data breach had their returns flagged, said Bob Estabrook, a Revenue Department spokesman. He added, "Even little things can cause returns to need a manual review." Those include math errors or forgetting to enter the "kicker" rebate credit on tax forms.
In February, about 30 percent of returns filed were flagged for manual processing, Estabrook said. Normal levels are between ten and 15 percent.
Manually processing a return can take up to 12 weeks, but each case is unique. Estabrook said people can check to see if their return has been flagged with the state's Where's My Return? online tool.