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Home How to Still Haven't Received Your Tax Refund? Here's What the Holdup Could Be

Still Haven’t Received Your Tax Refund? Here’s What the Holdup Could Be

examining cash

Some delays might be prevented with correct preparation whereas others are much less avoidable.

Sarah Tew/CNET

This story is a part of Taxes 2022, CNET’s protection of the perfect tax software program and every little thing else you could get your return filed shortly, precisely and on-time.

When you’re nonetheless ready on your tax refund to be direct-deposited and it has been greater than three weeks because you filed your tax return electronically, there’s probably a difficulty. On common, tax refunds usually arrive inside 21 days if there aren’t any errors. The IRS announced on March 23 that some refunds might take a bit of longer and listed quite a lot of widespread elements that will delay your tax refund from a well timed arrival. 

“The IRS cautions taxpayers to not depend on receiving a refund by a sure date, particularly when making main purchases or paying payments,” the company stated. You must also bear in mind that it could possibly take the financial institution a number of days to course of the deposit earlier than it hits your account. On-line cost companies like Venmo and Money App skip processing delays and present your cash two days earlier.

Listed here are 9 of the commonest causes IRS cash is delayed this yr. For extra, discover the greatest free tax software program, see find out how to monitor your refund to your checking account or your mailbox, and learn to create a web based IRS account. For individuals who have not filed but, you have received lower than two weeks left — the tax deadline day is April 18. We’ll maintain this story up to date.

Your tax return has errors or is incomplete

Whenever you file your tax return, it is essential to cross-check any info you have included to verify it is correct. For example, do not combine up the numbers of state taxes withheld with federal taxes withheld. Earlier than you submit your taxes to the IRS, merely take a re-evaluation to repair any potential errors and be sure to’ve crammed out every discipline.

Additionally, if you happen to acquired little one tax credit score funds final yr, be certain that the quantity on Letter 6419 matches the quantity you acquired. If an incorrect quantity is entered, the IRS might want to additional evaluate your tax return, which the agency says will lead to an “intensive delay.”

Be aware that if there’s an issue that must be mounted after you submit your return, the IRS will first attempt to proceed with out contacting you. Which means it may very well be days or even weeks earlier than you recognize there’s an issue.

You owe the IRS cash

When you owe again taxes to the IRS, the company might take some or all your tax refund to repay that debt. In case your refund accommodates more cash than you owe, you will obtain the remaining stability by way of direct deposit or examine within the mail, but it surely may very well be delayed. Taxpayers whose refunds are utilized by the IRS to cowl present cost obligations ought to obtain a CP49 notice within the mail. 

Even if you happen to do not owe the IRS cash, the company can maintain your tax refund cash you probably have different money owed to state or federal companies. The Treasury Offset Program permits the IRS to take all or a part of your tax refund to pay obligations reminiscent of little one assist, state taxes or unemployment compensation repayments. Such money owed might delay the arrival of your remaining tax refund or remove it fully.

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Youngster tax credit score: All the pieces we all know


Your banking info is inaccurate

Have you ever modified financial institution accounts because you final filed your taxes? If that’s the case, pay shut consideration to what the direct deposit info says when submitting your return this yr. When you by accident neglect to replace it together with your new direct deposit particulars, your refund will likely be despatched again to the IRS. This can probably lead to a paper examine being mailed to your home, which might take a number of weeks longer to reach.

You filed a paper tax return

This yr, the IRS is encouraging taxpayers to file electronically and arrange direct deposit to get their refunds again extra shortly. With mail delays, it might take some time for the IRS to obtain your return within the mail and even longer to challenge a paper examine. 

Submitting your return on-line as a substitute of by the mail is extra essential than ever this yr to keep away from refund delays, the IRS says. As a substitute of a paper tax return, use certainly one of these free on-line tax submitting companies so you do not have to attend to obtain your cash.

You did not correctly enter your stimulus funds

In 2021, most Individuals acquired a 3rd stimulus examine cost associated to the COVID-19 pandemic. Whereas that cash is non-taxable, it must be reconciled in your tax return if you’re claiming the restoration rebate credit score.

In latest testimony to the House Ways and Means Committee, IRS Commissioner Charles P. Retting stated that in 2020, the IRS “acquired way over 10 million returns” the place taxpayers did not correctly reconcile their stimulus funds with the quantities entered for his or her restoration rebate credit. These returns require a guide evaluate and create prolonged delays.

When you plan to assert the restoration rebate credit score in your tax return, learn to keep away from this error utilizing IRS Letter 6475 or your on-line IRS account.


Youngster tax credit score cash has been going out since mid-February.

Sarah Tew/CNET

You filed Type 8379, Injured Partner Allocation

It sounds painful, however this type has nothing to do with bodily accidents or disabilities.

When a married couple submitting collectively owes a federal debt, the IRS might seize their tax refund with a purpose to offset the cash that they owe. If just one half of the couple owes cash, the opposite companion might be thought-about “injured” and request at the least a part of the anticipated tax refund. Enter IRS Type 8379.

Whereas not as widespread as a number of the different causes, this tax-refund delay is important. Based on the instructions of Form 8379, taxpayers submitting the shape ought to anticipate as much as 14 weeks of processing time, or 11 weeks if submitting electronically.

The IRS suspects id theft

If the IRS flags a tax return for having a attainable likelihood of id theft, the company will maintain your refund till your id is verified. When that happens, you will probably obtain a 5071C letter that gives directions for proving your id. In case your tax return is reputable, do not panic — an IRS letter does not imply there’s proof of id theft, merely a suspicion.

Taxpayers can verify their identity on the IRS website, which presently requires creating an ID.me account, or by calling a devoted cellphone quantity listed on the IRS letter. If these strategies fail, you will have to schedule an in-person appointment at a neighborhood IRS workplace.

One methodology for avoiding identity-theft-related delays is to create an “Id Safety PIN” or IP-PIN. This distinctive six-digit ID is understood solely to you and the IRS and prevents anybody else from submitting a return in your identify. The IP PIN will solely final for one yr — you will have to create a brand new one subsequent tax season if you’d like the identical stage of id safety. You may want an ID.me account to create an IP PIN on-line, though it’s attainable to amass an IP PIN utilizing IRS Form 15227 (PDF) and a phone interview or in-person appointment.

You filed an amended tax return

It might occur to anybody — you forgot a type or a serious deduction otherwise you by accident picked the flawed submitting standing. If the change to your return is sufficiently big, you will need to file an amended return. The IRS permits anybody who recordsdata their tax return electronically to additionally e-file their amended return, however just for the present yr.

When you do file an amended return, you will have to apply persistence. The IRS warns that amended returns can take as much as 16 weeks to be processed. Earlier than submitting an amended return, chances are you’ll need to wait to obtain the tax refund out of your unique return. The IRS can usually appropriate small errors and regulate your tax refund accordingly. The company gives a web based device for serving to you determine if you should file an amended return.

Your return wants additional evaluate

As talked about above, if you happen to see a message saying that your tax return wants additional evaluate by the IRS, you may anticipate your refund to reach later than the common three weeks. For example, if you happen to obtain a CP07 Notice, it means the IRS has acquired your tax return and is holding your refund till it completes a extra thorough evaluate. You would possibly get this discover if you happen to’re claiming treaty advantages or deductions on the Schedule A section (PDF) of your taxes.

If the company finds no points, your refund might arrive inside six to 12 weeks, assuming no taxes are owed. If the IRS does discover points together with your return, it will ship you a discover with directions on what to do inside that very same interval. Which means you will get your refund months later than you anticipated.

For extra info, listed below are the most essential dates and deadlines for submitting your taxes. Additionally, listed below are 10 tax modifications that might have an effect on the scale of your refund, and 13 tax deductions and credit to spice up your refund.

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