The Montana Department of Revenue is offering expanded hours at its call center to assist taxpayers during the days before the deadline for filing income tax returns. Public Information Specialist Molly Petersen hopes this extension will let people get the help they need.

“Taxes are due a week from today,” said Petersen. “April 18 is when people need to have their taxes filed. We are offering extended call center hours so that people will have more chances to call to get tax help or have their tax questions answered. We’re really hoping that this will give people a chance to call before work or after work.”

According to Petersen, the department of revenue is saving the state money by stopping fraudulent returns.

“So far we have processed more than 360,000 income tax returns just since January 19th,” Petersen said. “We have stopped over 270 fraudulent returns and that has saved the state over $345,000.”

Petersen says this year has seen a significant decrease in the amount of fraudulent returns. Last calendar year the Montana Department of Revenue stopped 1,728 fraudulent returns and as of now there have only been about 270.