Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Rhode Island DOT Computer System Changeover Starts on November 7

Office will stay open, services will be limited, during conversion period

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – The third phase of the Rhode Island Division of Taxation’s
changeover to a new agency-wide computer system will start on November 7, 2016,
and continue through November 14, 2016.

During the computer conversion period, the Division will remain open to the public, but a
number of services will not be available. Taxpayers and tax professionals should
therefore plan ahead. All services will resume in full on November 15, 2016.

The following at-a-glance calendar shows when this phase of the conversion begins,
when it ends, and the intervening period – including two regularly scheduled holidays.

  • Nov. 7 Monday Open: Limited service 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
  • Nov 8 Tuesday Holiday: Closed (Election Day)
  • Nov 9 Wednesday Open: Limited service 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
  • Nov 10 Thursday Open: Limited service 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
  • Nov 11 Friday Holiday: Closed (Veterans Day)
  • Nov. 14 Monday Open: Limited service 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
  • Nov 15 Tuesday Open: Full service resumes 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Some services temporarily unavailable

The Division of Taxation, at One Capitol Hill in Providence, will remain open during
normal business hours while the computer system conversion occurs, and many
services will continue to be available. For example, the agency’s website and email
system will remain fully functional, payments will be received, and electronically filed tax
returns will be received and acknowledged.

However, a number of services will not be available during the conversion, mainly
because the old computer systems and the new system will be tied up with the
changeover. For example, during the changeover period, the Division will be unable to
issue letters of good standing, unable to release license and registration blocks, and
unable to check on a taxpayer’s account balance.

Taxpayers and tax practitioners should plan ahead. For example, if someone is blocked
from renewing a driver’s license, professional license, or motor vehicle registration
because that person owes back taxes, that person should pay the tax debt before
November 7. The Tax Division is in the process of mailing a letter to each person who is
subject to a license or registration block, urging them to resolve their tax matter prior to
November 7. (To make arrangements to pay tax debt before November 7, call the
Division of Taxation at (401) 574-8941 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. business days.

Impact on services

The following table shows some of the services that will continue to be available, and
some that will not be available, during the changeover period.

Division of Taxation services for computer conversion period Nov. 7 through Nov. 14

Services available:

  • Office remains open, sections remain open
  • Phones, emails answered (for general information only, not account‐specific)
  • Letters and other deliveries received by Division
  • Payments received by Division (credit card, debit card, ACH debit, ACH credit, checks) 
  • Employer Tax section (includes state unemployment insurance, TDI)
  • E‐filed tax returns received, acknowledged
  • Paper‐filed tax returns received 
  • Requests for forms, instructions accepted
  • General questions answered   
  • Website, including online services, open
  • Audits and examinations continue
  • Division accepting new business registrations (but not issuing permits or licenses)
  • Hearings held, legal papers received   

Services not available:

  • Issuing letters of good standing
  • Releasing license blocks
  • Releasing registration blocks
  • Releasing Collections liens and levies
  • Checking on taxpayer account status, history
  • Answering taxpayer‐specific inquiries
  • Issuing liquor license certificate of good standing

The Division is moving to a new, agency-wide computer system that will eventually save
everyone time and give taxpayers and tax practitioners more tools and improved online
access. To get to that point, the Division must change over the old system to the new
system. But to keep disruption to a minimum, the Division is doing the changeover
gradually, in stages over time.

The changeover process that starts on November 7 will last four business days. It
involves converting the corporate income tax, sales and use tax, and certain other tax
types to the new, agency-wide computer system.

When the process is completed, Division staff will be able to access corporate income
tax, sales and use tax, and certain other records via the new computer system. The
entire Division of Taxation will resume full, normal services for the public starting
Tuesday, November 15, 2016.

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