The IRS has sent more than 78 million refunds. How to check yours

If you filed a tax return at the last minute, you may see your 2021 refund sooner than expected.

According to the IRS, nine out of 10 refunds this season have been received within 21 days. As of April 15, the agency has issued more than 78 million refunds totaling over $242 billion, and the average refund is currently $3,103, the agency reported.

However, there are several reasons why an electronically filed return may be delayed, the IRS says. Your submission may need to be manually reviewed for missing information, errors, or identity theft issues.

Paper remains at the heart of the agency’s challenges in processing tax returns and correspondence.


National Advocate for Taxpayers

Over the past year, the IRS has reported millions of returns for stimulus payment errors, and the agency warned taxpayers to double-check filings.

“We are requesting special attention for those who received an economic impact payment or child tax advance last year,” IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig said in a statement. “People should make sure they are reporting the correct amount on their tax returns to avoid delays.”

paper residue

National Taxpayer Advocate Erin Collins highlighted the agency’s paper challenges in her annual report to Congress in January, calling it “cryptonite of the IRS” and pointing to a backlog of 5 million taxpayer mail in December. It’s still an issue.

“Paper remains at the heart of the agency’s challenges in processing tax returns and correspondence,” Collins said at an April 21 House subcommittee hearing.

While it can take 21 days to process error-free electronic submissions, refunds for paper returns “can take six months longer,” Collins estimates.

As of April 15, the agency received nearly 118 million electronic returns — about 96% of submissions. That may change if more returns arrive before the October 17 extension period.

How to check the status of your refund

The quickest way to get an update on your refund is through the Where’s My Refund? page. Online tool or via the IRS2Go app. The portal shows three steps of the process: Return Receipt, Refund Approved, and Refund Sent, with expected deposit date.

You can view the status 24 hours after the IRS receives your electronic filing or four weeks after your paper statement is sent out. The agency updates the portal daily, usually overnight.

More from Smart Tax Planning:

Here’s a look at more tax planning news.

If your refund isn’t what you expected, some of the funds may have been diverted for past due federal or state taxes, unemployment debt, child or spousal support, or other federal debt, the IRS says.

A lower payment may also reflect an error on your tax return, e.g. B. The amounts declared for your incentive or child tax credit. The IRS has sent more than 78 million refunds. How to check yours

Gary B. Graves

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