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Why Is My Income Tax Taking So Long

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Why Do I See A Tax Topic 151 Tax Topic 152 Or Irs Error Message

Heres why your tax refund is taking so long

Although the Where’s My Refund tool typically shows a status of Received, Approved or Sent, there are a variety of other messages some users may see.

One of the most common is Tax Topic 152, indicating you’re likely getting a refund but it hasn’t been approved or sent yet. The notice simply links out to an informational topic page on the IRS FAQ website explaining the types and timing of tax refunds.

The delay could be an automated message for taxpayers claiming the child tax credit or earned income tax credit sent because of additional fraud protection steps.

Tax Topic 151 means your tax return is now under review by the IRS. The agency either needs to verify certain credits or dependents, or it has determined that your tax refund will be reduced to pay money that it believes you owe. You’ll need to wait about four weeks to receive a notice from the IRS explaining what you need to do to resolve the status.

There are other IRS refund codes that a small percentage of tax filers receive, indicating freezes, math errors on tax returns or undelivered checks. The College Investor offers a list of IRS refund reference codes and errors and their meaning.

Some Call Tax Season A ‘big Mess’

The IRS had received 100.9 million returns through April 9, down 3% from the year-ago timeframe. It processed 91.15 million individual tax returns through April 9, down 6.8% from a year ago.

At the same time, roughly 9.5 million fewer federal income tax refunds were issued through April 9 a 12.3% decline compared with the same time last year, according to IRS statistics. Through April 9, the agency hadissued 67.7 million income tax refunds averaging $2,888.

Real-life challenges at the IRS include dealing with a COVID-19 related backlog of returns from 2019.

As of April 9, the IRS said it had yet to complete 1.5 million individual tax returns received last year but the IRS said those returns are in the processing pipeline.

“We are processing returns received over the summer and fall in 2020 due to the extended July 15, 2020, tax filing due date,” the IRS said.

IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig, who spoke before the Senate Finance Committee on April 13, said the 2021 tax filing season “continues to go smoothly.”

Not everyone agrees.

“It’s a big mess,” said Antonio Brown, a CPA in Flint, Michigan.

As of mid-April, Brown said he had about 15 clients who continued to wait for their refunds.

“They’ve been contacting me almost weekly,” Brown said. “And every time I check the IRS website, it says that the refund is being processed and the refund date has yet to be determined.”

They’re “the very ones that need the refunds to help through these tough times,” Brown said.

Where To Expect Delays

Susan Allen, senior manager for tax practice and ethics with the American Institute of CPAs, said the IRS has issued guidance to tax professionals this year noting that in some situations, it may take more than the typical wait of 21 days or less to issue any related refund.

Delays could hit returns such as:

  • Tax returns that require a correction relating to the recovery rebate credit or what most people who aren’t tax professionals know as stimulus money.

  • Tax returns where the IRS needs to validate information relating to the earned income tax credit or the advance child tax credit.

“Both the Rebate Recovery Credit and the EITC lookback provision require verification of information,” said Matt Hetherwick, director of individual tax programs for the Accounting Aid Society of Detroit.

Experts say the IRS has been working to develop improved fraud detection tools, which causes an additional review when a return gets caught by the filters.

“Some of these become manual reviews causing delays,” Hetherwick said.

A review by the IRS means that taxpayers will wait longer for refund cash for many 2020 tax returns.

H& R Block notes on its website: “If your return meets these criteria, the IRS will manually review your return, and it may take an additional 10 to 14 business days to receive your refund.”

Including current year returns, the IRS said that as of April 9, the agency had 16.2 million unprocessed individual returns in the pipeline.

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Individual Income Tax Refunds

Check the status of your refund online using Where’s My Refund?

  • Most error free, electronically filed returns are processed within 5 business days of receiving the return and most refunds are issued within 21 days from the date a taxpayer files their return.
  • If a return contains incorrect or questionable information, it may take up to 90 days from the date of receipt by DOR to process a return and issue a refund.
  • All first-time Georgia income tax filers, or taxpayers who have not filed in Georgia for at least five years, will receive a paper check.
  • Read Georgia Tax Facts for important tax information and to learn more about what we are doing to protect Georgia taxpayers against fraud.

The surviving spouse, administrator, or executor may file a return on behalf of a taxpayer who died during the taxable year. When filing, use the same filing status and due date that was used on the Federal Income tax return.

To have a refund check in the name of the deceased taxpayer reissued, mail the following to the address on the form:

  • Copy of the death certificate
  • Original refund check issued in the deceaseds name
  • Any other information specified on the form

Contact Us if you need additional assistance.

Lost, Stolen or Stale-dated Checks

If your refund check was lost, stolen or becomes stale-dated, Contact Us for assistance.

Name Change

To have a refund check reissued in your changed name, submit a copy of two of the following accepted documents:

Why Have I Not Gotten My Tax Refund Yet 2020

Why is my state refund taking so long?

its possible that your tax refund will be delayed due to a variety of circumstances. There may have been a problem with your jobs numbers as well as yours. In most years, however, you need a paper refund to file your tax return to receive a delayed tax refund. The COVID-19 pandemic added to a backlog of tax returns.

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You May Face A Delay If You Claim These Tax Credits

There are a couple of issues that could cause delays, even if you do everything correctly.

The IRS notes that it can’t issue a refund that involves the Earned Income Tax Credit or the Child Tax Credit before mid-February. “The law provides this additional time to help the IRS stop fraudulent refunds from being issued,” the agency said this week.

That means if you file as soon as possible on January 24, you still might not receive a refund within the 21-day time frame if your tax return involves either of those tax credits. In fact, the IRS is informing those who claim these credits that they will most likely receive their refunds in early March, assuming they filed their returns on January 24 or close to that date.

The reason relates to a 2015 law that slows refunds for people who claim these credits, which was designed as a measure to combat fraudsters who rely on identity theft to grab taxpayer’s refunds.

With reporting by the Associated Press.

How Long Will It Take To Get Your Refund

General refund processing times during filing season:

  • Electronically filed returns: Up to 4 weeks
  • Paper filed returns: Up to 8 weeks
  • Returns sent by certified mail: Allow an additional 3 weeks

The Wheres my Refund application shows where in the process your refund is. When we’ve finished processing your return, the application will show you the date your refund was sent. All returns are different, and processing times will vary.

See how our return process works:

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Filing An Incomplete Tax Return

A common cause of delayed tax return processing, leading to delayed refunds, is missing information on the return. “Failure to include basic information, such as the Social Security numbers of dependents, can significantly hold up a refund,” according to Lee E. Holland, CPA, CFP, and former IRS agent. For paper returns, failure to include copies of W-2 or 1099 forms increases processing time, as do missing forms or schedules.

When you use TurboTax to prepare your taxes, well check for common errors before you file.

Why Could Tax Refunds Be Delayed

Why is your tax return taking so long?

There are a number of reasons a refund might be held back. Math errors or simple typos are often responsible. Common mistakes the IRS has flagged as leading to delays include: selecting an incorrect filing status forgetting to list all income including bank interest and unemployment compensation not answering a question on trading cryptocurrency or having a typo in your name, address, Social Security number or bank account number.

This year, the pandemic’s Economic Impact Payments also known as stimulus checks are creating an extra hurdle for taxpayers, leading to a “significantly higher error rate” on returns, according to IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig.

Filers will need to correctly enter any stimulus payments they received and the numbers will need to match up with IRS records. However, “far more than 10 million” Americans have put in numbers that don’t match up, leading to delays, Rettig told Congress last week.

Other delays are due to Congress changing the tax law to allow Americans to use 2019 or 2020 income to claim the Earned Income Tax Credit. This change took place after the IRS had already updated its IT systems for the 2021 tax year, Rettig noted, meaning that taxpayers who take advantage of that law will need to have their returns manually reviewed by an IRS staffer.

Understaffing is also taking a toll, with shrinking headcount at the IRS close to levels not seen since 1974, according to Rettig.

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How To Check Tax Refund Status

You can avoid tax refund delays by filing your return online and checking it thoroughly for mistakes before submission. Make sure to check your mail regularly in case the IRS has contacted you for additional information regarding your return.

If youre growing impatient, you can track your refund’s progress. The IRS launched a tool, “Wheres My Refund,” to help people monitor their refund status. You can access the tool on the IRS website or through its IRS2Go mobile app.

If you expect a tax refund from #IRS this year, remember to check the Wheres My Refund?” tool for status updates.

Incorrect Direct Deposit Information

The fastest way to receive a refund is to e-file a correct return and request a direct deposit of the refunded amount. This is one area, Holland says, where you should triple-check your data entry. “A simple mistake in the routing or account number can delay a refund for weeks or even months,” he adds. The IRS will issue a paper check once the deposit is rejected or returned by the bank, and mail the check to you.

You can choose to have a paper check sent from the outset, rather than direct deposit. This will technically delay your refund, compared to when you’d have it with direct deposit. Assuming everything else is correct, the delay is limited to the amount of time it takes the IRS to issue the check and the Postal Service to deliver it.

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Tax Payer Identify Verification Delaying Irs Tax Refund Processing And Direct Deposit Payments

In a lot of recent cases, it appears that the IRS is delaying refund processing because they are having to spend a lot more time validating tax payer identities given the rise in online tax related fraud over the last few years. In most cases the IRS will notify selected tax filers via WMR or mail to contact a IRS number to verify their identity. After verification it could take up to 9 weeks for you to get a refund. See more in this article.

Reason #1 Irs Taking Your Refund

2020 to 2021 IRS Tax Refund Processing Schedule and Direct Deposit ...

When the IRS issues refunds, it mainly takes or reduces refunds when taxpayers have debts to pay. Here are the two most common situations:

You owe federal taxes, and you havent paid:

If the IRS took your refund to pay federal taxes you owe, youll know it a few weeks after you file your return. Youll get IRS notice CP49,Overpayment Applied to Taxes Owed. If you dont think you owed what the IRS says you owed, the only thing you can do is file an amended return to correct the tax or contest any extra tax the IRS charged you .

You owe other debts, and you havent paid:

The Treasury Offset Program allows the IRS to take or reduce your refund if you owe other types of debts, including non-tax debts, such as:

  • Past-due child support
  • State taxes
  • Unemployment compensation repayments

The IRS cant answer questions or resolve disputes related to TOP debts. Taxpayers should call TOP at 304-3107 for answers.

Spouses who arent responsible can get their part of the refund

If you filed jointly with your spouse, and the IRS took your full refund for your spouses debts, you can get your portion of the refund. File an injured spouse claim using Form 8379, Injured Spouse Allocation.

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If I Can Order My Irs Tax Transcript Does It Mean I Am Getting My Refund Direct Deposited Soon

This question used to come up a lot, but is not very relevant since you can request a tax transcript online via your IRS account. The transcript is free and does show processing tax codes related to progress and status of past and current tax returns.

That being said, there is a correlation in reviewing your transcript for current year IRS processing transaction codes. If you see transaction codes , it means the IRS is or has processed your tax return, and refund where applicable.

But the IRS is very clear that reviewing your transcript does not mean you will imminently be getting a refund and is among the common myths and misconceptions repeated in social media. They still say that checking the WMR website or IRS2Go app is the best and official way to check your refund status.

Tax Topic 151 vs 152 notice

When you log on to the WMR website or IRS2Go mobile app, you may be presented with a message to refer to IRS Tax topic 151 or 152 in relation to your refund. But what do these mean? Tax Topic 151 simply means that youre getting a tax adjustment due to an offset or IRS proposed adjustment.

You will get an official IRS letter or notice explaining the actual offset and adjustments to your tax return, and details on how to appeal this action but likely it will delay you getting your refund. While not great news, the silver lining here is that the IRS has processed your return and your adjusted refund should be on its way.

Some Tax Refunds May Be Delayed This Year Here’s Why

Three weeks before the official end of tax season, the IRS has issued nearly 50 million tax refunds. But many others are still waiting for a refund. In addition, the agency has a backlog of nearly 7.5 individual tax returns it’s processing from prior years far more than the 1 million it usually has going into a tax season.

Here’s why some refunds might be taking longer this year and what taxpayers might do about it.

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Claiming The Earned Income Tax Credit

If a worker wants to take advantage of the EITC, they must file taxes and have earned some income to claim the credit. Keep in mind that workers cannot claim the EITC if they file Form 2555 for foreign earned income, or Form 2555-EZ for foreign earned income exclusions. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or residents, and have a valid Social Security number issued on or before their tax return due date.

To estimate the amount of your credit, you can use the worksheets included with the instructions for Forms 1040. If you need assistance, you can use the EITC assistant provided by the IRS.

Why Do I See Irs Treas 310 In My Bank Statement

Why are Tax Refunds Taking So Long? The Ugly Truth About the IRS

If you receive your tax refund by direct deposit, you may see IRS TREAS 310 listed in the transaction. The 310 code simply identifies the transaction as a refund from a filed tax return in the form of electronic payment. You may also see TAX REF in the description field for a refund.

If you see a 449 instead of 310, it means your refund has been offset for delinquent debt.

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Tax Return Taking So Long It May Be Because Of Incorrect Information

In most cases, you will find the IRS is reviewing your tax return and therefore there is a delay due to errors or incomplete information. Knowing some of the common mistakes can help you avoid them in the future:

  • Inaccurate or missing social security numbers triple check your social security number on your tax forms for yourself, dependents, and when filing jointlythe second persons social security number.
  • Misspelled names this is especially common when filing a paper tax return, so make you double-check everyones names on your tax return papers before filing.
  • Filing status errors If you are married, make sure to review with your spouse whether you are filing jointly or separately. Make sure that the plan is reflected in your actual tax return documents.
  • Calculation errors sometimes math mistakes can happen when filing on your own or through a tax expert. These mistakes will impact the status of your tax refund. The e-file process catches these common errors, while a paper return may need a double-check.
  • Incorrect bank account numbers this is important for returns the IRS sends to a bank account via direct deposit.
  • Unsigned forms if your tax forms are not signed, they are not considered valid, and so, dont forget to sign and date all the different areas of your tax forms.
  • Filing with an expired individual taxpayer identification number
  • Avoid Mistakes With E-Filing and Professional Help

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