tax consultantTax season is here and the refunds are rolling out. If you are expecting your tax refund and you should happen to get double what you are expecting back, don’t plan a spending spree just yet.

66,000 Louisiana resident taxpayers recently discovered they received double their state tax refund. According to WAFB-TV in Baton Rouge, Louisiana has accidentally paid double tax refunds to some of its residents totaling almost $26 million.

Jacques Berry, a spokesman for the Division of Administration told the CBS-affiliate that the state is the process of trying to recover the money. The duplicate refunds were discovered Wednesday. Most of the funds were sent by direct deposit, and banks are being contacted to reverse the overages. A small amount of the refunds were placed on debit cards and those amounts are being “blacked out,” Berry said.

Berry went on to urge anyone who received a larger refund than what they are actually due to not spend the money, WAFB reported.

For federal taxes, the average 2019 tax refund issued in the first five weeks of the filing season rose to $3,068, up 0.7 percent from $3,036 at the same time last year. The IRS has issued about 46.4 million total refunds. That’s more than 2 million fewer, or down 4.2 percent, from last year.

The Internal Revenue Service began accepting returns on Jan. 28. Most taxpayers have until April 15 to file their returns.

While financial experts say it’s smarter to receive bigger paychecks during the year rather than a refund, that’s not what most Americans do. About seven in 10 typically get a refund, which may help sustain the financially flawed practice.

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