Senator Dan Brown’s Legislative Column

brownSpring is almost here and it is time, once again, to think about filing your state and federal taxes. The April 17 deadline to file or request an extension on your taxes will be here before you know it. While many have already filed their taxes, statistics show that most of us wait until closer to the deadline to file our taxes.

In recent years, the way people file their taxes has changed. Filing electronically is the fastest growing alternative to mailing in paper returns. The Missouri Department of Revenue (DOR) received more than 2.6 million electronically filed returns in 2017. Convenience, accuracy and the ability to direct deposit your refund are just a few of the reasons why electronic filing is becoming the most popular filing method. Thanks to direct deposit and other options for receiving a person’s refund, most refunds are processed in less than two months.

This year, DOR has a new tool available to help Missourians track the status of their tax return. Missourians can now sign up to receive automatic text or email alerts each time the status of their state tax return is updated.  Instead of having to wait on the phone for a customer service representative or check online every day to see their status, those who choose email or text alerts will be informed as soon as something changes.

To enroll in alerts, you only need three pieces of information: Social Security number, filing status and anticipated refund or balance due. Return information will be available within 48 hours of filing electronically or four weeks after mailing a paper tax return. Those who sign up will receive easy-to-read graphics that indicate the current status of their return, as well as the anticipated refund issue date.

To access the Missouri Return Inquiry System and sign up for automatic text and email alerts, please visit status/.

A similar system is available to check on federal tax returns. To check the status of your return, you will need the same three pieces of information: Social Security number, filing status and anticipated refund or balance due. To check the status of your federal tax return visit:

As always, I encourage my constituents to contact me throughout the year with comments, questions or suggestions by calling my office at (573) 751-5713. To find more information about the bills I sponsor, visit Thank you for reading this and for your participation in state government.