- 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

Economics 101

Intro to economics. But fun.

View Course »

What is Inflation?

Why do prices go up?

View Course »

TurboTax Articles

Tax Tips for the Blind

Anyone whose field of vision falls at or below 20 degrees, who wears corrective glasses but whose vision is 20/200 or less in his best eye, or who has no eyesight at all, meets the legal definition of being blind and is eligible for certain tax deductions.

What is Form 4255: Recapture of Investment Credit?

When is a tax credit not a tax credit? When the IRS takes it back. If you're in the situation where you have to file IRS Form 4255, you might have to pay back a tax credit you've earned in prior years. This process, known as recapture, occurs if you claim a credit -- in this case, a credit for a specific type of business investment -- and then no longer qualify for that credit.

The Most Important Tax Forms for ALEs (Applicable Large Employers)

In 2015, some parts of the Affordable Care Act specifically apply to businesses, in particular, large employers. The Employer Shared Responsibility provisions affect companies with 50 or more full-time employees or an equivalent of part-time or seasonal workers. These companies are called Applicable Large Employers, or ALEs. 2015 is considered a transition year as everyone gets used to the new normal for workplace health plans.

Employer Sponsored Health Coverage Explained

The Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, is simpler than some people may give it credit for. The basic rule to remember is that everyone must carry Minimum Essential Coverage (MEC) or pay a penalty. Employers with 50 full-time employees or more are obligated to sponsor plans for their workers to help them meet this requirement.

How to Report RSUs or Stock Grants on Your Tax Return

Restricted stock units (RSUs) and stock grants are often used by companies to reward their employees with an investment in the company rather than with cash. As the name implies, RSUs have rules as to when they can be sold. Stock grants often carry restrictions as well. How your stock grant is delivered to you, and whether or not it is vested, are the key factors when determining tax treatment.

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