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Five Million Returns e-filed.and Counting

Ten Days Left to File Taxes

As the April 15 tax deadline approaches, State Controller and Franchise Tax Board Chair Steve Westly today announced that a record 5 million state tax returns have been filed electronically. Last year, the FTB received 3.9 million e-filed returns, and expects to receive 6.4 million e-filed returns by the end of this year.

"Californians understand that e-filing is the future of tax filing,“ said Westly, a former Internet executive. ”E-filing is fast, easy, and saves the state up to $1 per return."

E-file allows taxpayers to receive their refund within seven days, and even faster if they choose Direct Deposit. Alternatively, refunds processed through paper tax returns may take four to six weeks during the peak processing period.

Taxpayers have several e-filing options to choose from: tax preparers, which contribute 85 percent of all e-filed returns; do-it-yourself software products available online, some of which offer their services for free; and the FTB's NetFile, a free e-file service taxpayers can use to file directly to the FTB without going through a third party.

Californians are increasingly taking advantage of all of the FTB's electronic services. The number of people using Direct Deposit to receive their refunds has increased 25 percent over last year, with an average refund of $797.

The Web Pay option allows taxpayers to pay taxes or extension payments, estimated taxes, or delinquent taxes on the FTB's Website, at www.ftb.ca.gov. The transaction works much like a debit card. The FTB also accepts Discover/NOVUS, MasterCard, American Express, or Visa credit card payment.