Refund Feed

Residents in 21 states got some good news from the Internal Revenue Service earlier this year. In 2022, they received general welfare, disaster, or stimulus payments from their state officials. These generally were referred to as refunds. Basic state tax refunds in some instances are taxable at the federal level. But the IRS announced on Feb. 10 that in most cases these special 2022 state payments were not. The affected taxpayers live in Alaska, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, and Virginia.... Read more →


Through March 10, the Internal Revenue Service had issued more than 49 million refunds, which came to a total of $146.2 billion. If you're still waiting on your part of that, you're probably getting a bit frustrated. I get it. You want your cash. At the very least, you want answers as to why it's taking so long for your tax refund to show up in your mailbox or bank account. That frustration is why lots of folks every filing season fall for myths, misconceptions, and just plain wrong information they think will help speed up the delivery of their... Read more →


via GIPHY Where's your tax refund? Use the IRS' online tracker to find out The first look at 2023 tax filing data revealed that while returns were coming in at a brisker pace than last year, the average tax refund amount was smaller. That's still true, three weeks into the season. The average refund amount issued for the week ending Feb. 17 is less than at the same period in 2022. Again. However, that comparatively smaller refund so far this year actually is a decent amount, specifically $3,140. I haven't filed yet, so I don't know what my refund will... Read more →


When it comes to paycheck tax withholding, you want to get it just right to avoid a bear of a tax problem. (Goldilocks caught in Baby Bear's bed drawing by Leonard Leslie Brooke via Wikipedia Commons) Almost 29 million taxpayers have filed returns so far this 2023 tax season. Most early filers are tax refund recipients. Those of us who tend to owe send our 1040s to the IRSs closer to the April deadline, which is on the 18th this year. Both filing tendencies underscore a need to get tax withholding right. Overwithholding costs: IRS data show that most taxpayers,... Read more →


That's all?!? (Photo by Karolina Grabowska) As we hit mid-February, more tax refunds will start going out. The Internal Revenue Service has been waiting, per 2015's Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes, or PATH, Act, to issue refunds on returns where filers claim the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) or the Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC). The mandated delay was designed to give the IRS more time to catch fraudulent refunds based on these two popular tax credits. The IRS expects most EITC and/or ACTC related refunds to be available in taxpayer bank accounts or on debit cards by Feb. 28... Read more →


Image via California Franchise Tax Board Individuals who got special tax or inflation relief payments from their states last year won't have to worry about handing over a portion to the U.S. Treasury. The Internal Revenue Service announced late Friday, Feb. 10, afternoon, that, "in the interest of sound tax administration and other factors," recipients of the payments won't have to report the amounts on their 2022 tax returns that are now being filed. Disaster and general welfare exemptions: The IRS said that it will not challenge the taxability of payments related to general welfare and disaster relief. This means... Read more →


It's never fun having to re-do your taxes. But if it means you'll get a refund, or a larger amount than with your original filing, it's worth it. And now amended filers can have that refund amount sent straight to a financial account. The Internal Revenue Service announced today that people who e-file a Form 1040-X, Amended U.S. Individual Income Tax Return, now will be able to select direct deposit as the money's delivery method. More X filing going electronic: The IRS began accepting e-filed 1040-X forms in 2020. Most tax software programs have added the amended filing option to... Read more →


Photo by Brett Sayles Tax refunds are one of the main ways the Internal Revenue Service uses to encourage more of us taxpayers to go digital. For years, the IRS has said that if you e-file your tax return and include bank information, your refund can be directly deposited in less than 21 days. There are, of course, a few caveats connected to this promise of a three-week refund turnaround. First, your return must not have any iffy entries that prompt Uncle Sam's tax collector to take a closer look, and possibly send out follow-up communications. Second, there isn't a... Read more →


The Earned Income Tax Credit, or EITC, is one of the most beneficial tax breaks for lower- and moderate-income workers. It's also one of the most under-claimed. The reasons are many, starting with its complexity. You have to work to be able to claim the EITC. But if you make too much money, you're ineligible. Your marital status comes in the calculation of the final credit, as does the size of your family. And many single people ignore the EITC because they think it's only available to filers with dependent children. "This is an extremely important tax credit that helps... Read more →


Photo by Dewang Gupta on Unsplash In 2019, the Internal Revenue Service received nearly 156 million tax returns. Then came the COVID-19 pandemic. In 2022, the number of 1040s filed hit 169.7 million. The increase continued in 2021 with the IRS receiving 169.1 million returns, and into 2022, when 164.3 returns were sent to the tax agency. The main reason for the 2020-2022 filing spikes was the coronavirus-related financial help — economic impact payments and increased advance Child Tax Credit amounts — that the IRS was tasked with delivering. Many, OK most, of those millions who hadn't filed before 2020... Read more →


Photo by Kay Bell The Internal Revenue Service won't start processing 2022 tax year returns until Jan. 23, but you can file before then. A lot of folks are doing just that. The most common and obvious motive for filing early is to get the refund you're expecting. But there are some other reasons you might want to get your return to the IRS as soon as possible. 1. To beat tax ID thieves to the punch. The IRS and its Security Summit partners have made good progress in recent years in reducing tax identity theft and refund fraud. One... Read more →


Unemployment benefits can be a godsend when you lose your job. They also can be a god-awful problem at tax time. That money you get to help tide you over until you find another job is taxable income. In certain situations, however, lawmakers have provided unemployment compensation, or UC (and yes, that's its official name, so the compensation moniker explains the taxing), have exempted some of the government money from federal tax. COVID UC exemption: That was the case during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. The extraordinary circumstances of so many people losing their jobs at the same time... Read more →


Money troubles lead some taxpayers to refund anticipation loans. If you're not careful, it could make finances worse. When the Internal Revenue Service officially opens the 2023 tax filing season, which is expected to be at near the end of the month (it was Jan. 24 last year), it will process e-filed 1040s first. Those returns' electronic data automatically goes into the IRS processing system. That means, says the agency, most of those early filers should get their refunds within 21 days. But what if you just can't wait three weeks for the tax cash? Or you know your refund... Read more →


Photo by Karolina Grabowska The Internal Revenue Service is making progress on its documents backlog, which started in 2020 with COVID-19 pandemic office closures and snowballed. But it's not there yet. That's distressing news for taxpayers and their tax pros who've been waiting for accounts to be brought up to date. But there's a tiny silver lining for those whose refunds are among the still-stalled IRS stack. Inflation has pushed up the interest rate that the IRS will pay on refunds that take longer than 45 days to process and issue. More interest on overdue refunds: IRS interest rates are... Read more →


Some taxpayers might not be this happy in 2023 with their federal tax refund. (Image via Giphy) Many folks are already eagerly anticipating the 2023 tax filing season because they expect to get a refund from Uncle Sam. They might be disappointed. In a recent news release encouraging taxpayers to get ready for the upcoming filing season, the Internal Revenue Service slipped in this warning: Refunds may be smaller in 2023. There are three tax issues in 2022 that contribute to why the IRS will be sending some taxpayers smaller refunds when they file next year. No extra coronavirus funds:... Read more →


Reviewed and updated Nov. 23, 2023 What better topic for Thanksgiving than tax turkeys and how to avoid them. Our first tax turkey, represented by this solo strutting showy bird, is incorrect withholding. (Photo by Chris Henry on Unsplash) Thanksgiving, a time of gathering with family you haven't seen for a while. But sometimes, even when we get along with our relatives, we need a break from all that familial reconnecting. You could take a walk. Or check out a calming app. Or take care of a tax task. To help with that third suggestion, the rest of this Thanksgiving... Read more →


Updated Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022 You still have time to electronically claim the benefits, but not much. The deadline to e-file is Thursday, Nov. 17. If you missed out on the special COVID-19 relief payments, notably the enhanced Child Tax Credit (CTC), then head to the Internal Revenue Service's Free File website. The IRS is keeping Free File operating through Nov. 17 so eligible nonfilers can e-file a Form 1040 to claim their eligible COVID benefits at, as the name says, no cost. In addition to the CTC, eligible taxpayers may be able to claim some or all of the... Read more →


Tyle Perry working on one of his many productions. (Facebook photo) Most of us would celebrate getting a $9 million refund from the Internal Revenue Service. But then, most of us aren't billionaire media mogul and philanthropist Tyler Perry. When an IRS audit resulted in Uncle Sam handing over the multimillions, Perry fired his accounting team. "I'll let you make a million mistakes, but you can't do the same thing over and over again. That's how I run my business. Here's the mistake. Let's fix it; let's move forward," Perry told the audience at a recent Earn Your Leisure Conference.... Read more →


Texas National Guard at Texas-Mexico border as part of Operation Lone Star. (Image via Texas Military Department Facebook page) Military personnel face lots of challenges. One unexpected one for some Texas troops is the Internal Revenue Service. Texas National Guard members deployed to the Texas-Mexico border as part of Gov. Greg Abbott's Operation Lone Star could end up paying hundreds or even thousands of dollars in unexpected federal taxes, according to a report by the Texas Tribune. The problem is a payroll error made by state officials. Incorrect withholding by employer: The Tribune story says the payroll system used by... Read more →


UPDATE, Oct. 6, 2022: North and South Carolina, which were hit when Ian made a second U.S. landfall after devastating southwest Florida, now also get until Feb. 15, 2023, to meet various tax deadlines. More in my Carolinas/Ian follow-up post. This image from the NASA/Landsat Operational Land Imager (OLI) was taken about three hours before Hurricane Ian made landfall on Sept. 28 in Cayo Costa, Florida. (NASA Earth Observatory image by Joshua Stevens, using Landsat data from the U.S. Geological Survey, GEOS-5 data from the Global Modeling and Assimilation Office at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, and roads from OpenStreetMap.... Read more →