City of GR mails notices over missing tax paperwork

Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Ahead of the city of Grand Rapids 2019 income tax filing deadline, some taxpayers may be receiving notices in the mail, stating some paperwork is missing from their return.

Grand Rapids Income Tax Administrator Jennifer Woodard explained the letters aren’t meant to make people think they owe more money. 

“It’s not a bill,” Woodard told News 8 Tuesday. “It’s just something saying this is the changes we’ve made, please give us this documentation. So, we try to tell you on that document exactly what we’re missing and what we need.”

The income tax department mailed out 1,121 notices of correction as of Tuesday afternoon. The majority are related to issues found while processing e-filed or paper returns, with 167 being related to the city’s online portal.

“The majority of them are missing things like their W-2s so it means we haven’t gotten a W-2 from the employer yet, which is rare because those are due February 28,” Woodard said. “So, if we don’t have the employer W-2, then we will contact (the taxpayer) to ask for a copy so we can then go back to the employer and say, hey we need this W-2.”

The city’s filing deadline is July 31. Typically, Grand Rapids sees 125,000 to 150,000 returns filed by mid-July, but right now the department only has 90,000. 

The hope is the letters will lead to fixing any existing issues with already filed returns prior to the deadline.

Like many workplaces, the department is also facing staffing shortages due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We normally have quite a few temporaries with us, just opening mail and processing, but due to the constrictions of people working so close together, we’re not able to have that many people in the office,” Woodard explained. “We are trying to get to everything as quickly as possible. We just ask that people be a little more patient with us.”

Anyone who receives a letter can email the requested information to GRincometax@grcity.us or call 616.456.3415 with questions. 

Walk-ins are also welcome at the city’s office inside city hall at 300 Monroe NW in downtown Grand Rapids.

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