- Days left

Your Tax Refund: What to Expect

×
Tax Refund CheckWhether you've already filed your return or expect to wait until the last minute, the big question on the mind of everyone who expects to get money back from the IRS is when they'll receive their tax refund. But it's not just when you file your return that will control that answer: The steps you take before you file can make a big difference

The IRS does its best to get refunds out as quickly as possible. Last year, the IRS had a better than 90 percent success rate in getting refunds back to taxpayers within 21 days, and it expects to do as well this year. The IRS's online Where's My Refund? tool lets you check on the status of your refund as soon as 24 hours after it receives your e-filed return. If you do a paper return instead of e-filing, though, the IRS says not to check until four full weeks after you send it in.
To use the tool, you need to have your Social Security number, your filing status, and the exact amount of the refund you expect to get. The tool will then tell you the status of your refund.

Speed Up Your Refund
The IRS lists a number of causes for refund delays. Mistakes in Social Security numbers, addresses, and bank routing and account numbers can cause problems in tax-return processing. Moreover, the IRS looks more closely at some refunds to protect against fraud. So if you're expecting a big refund check or used unusual tax-law provisions to get a refund, it may take longer for the IRS to get it to you.

As the IRS makes clear, e-filing is one obvious way to get your refund faster. But another way is to arrange to have your refund deposited directly into your bank account.

Your tax return has spaces for you to put your banking information for direct deposit, and if you want your refund sent to more than one different account, you can use IRS Form 8888 to split it into as many as three separate payments. Given the danger of stolen or lost refund checks in the mail, direct deposit is a much more secure way to get your refund quickly.
Of course, the best way to get your refund faster is to file as early as possible. If you wait until the mad rush at the end of tax season, it'll take longer for the IRS to work through the backlog and get your money back to you.


More on Taxes at the DailyFinance Tax Center


Increase your money and finance knowledge from home

Goal Setting

Want to succeed? Then you need goals!

View Course »

Advice for Recent College Grads

Prepare yourself for the "real world".

View Course »

TurboTax Articles

Know The Key Dates For Health Care Reform

"Open enrollment periods for the health insurance marketplace under the Affordable Care Act are limited" says Mac Schneider, a retired certified public accountant from Albion, Michigan. ?Avoiding tax penalties requires awareness of important dates that may vary year-to-year.? As well as key dates, there are time cycles and coverage gap allowances important to health insurance coverage under provisions of health care reform.

Deducting Mortgage Interest FAQs

If you're a homeowner, you probably qualify for a deduction on your home mortgage interest. The tax deduction also applies if you pay interest on a condominium, cooperative, mobile home, boat or recreational vehicle used as a residence.

What Extra Tax Deductions Should I Make Sure To Take?

The federal government offers tax deductions and credits to reduce taxable income under certain circumstances. There are several that are often overlooked, including deductions for job hunting, caregiver expenses for dependents and children while you work, a credit to reduce taxes for moderate- to low-income earners and the premium tax credit associated with the Affordable Care Act. TurboTax can help determine if you qualify for these credits and deductions.

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum

2 Comments

Filter by:
wstax

I MADE ABOUT $30,000 IN 12102----GOT A W2 FORM. But, I also made about $87,000 from a hoppy of mine----selling jewelry for cash only--------------do you think it is necessary for me to show that on my tax form----it is all cash--------------------

February 14 2013 at 5:15 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to wstax's comment
wstax

I would tend to say no----after all , it is all cash--------------------who would know?

February 14 2013 at 5:16 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply