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You can begin submitting particular person revenue tax returns on Jan. 24, however there could also be refund delays because the IRS combats a backlog and restricted staffing, in line with Treasury officers.
Nevertheless, there could also be methods to get your cash quicker, monetary consultants say.
Though refunds are sometimes despatched inside 21 days, many filers waited longer final 12 months, and the IRS nonetheless hadn’t processed thousands and thousands of submitted particular person returns on the finish of December.
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“These numbers are simply alarming,” mentioned licensed monetary planner Larry Harris, director of tax companies at Parsec Monetary in Asheville, North Carolina.
Whereas digital submitting with direct deposit is a perennial tip, listed here are another methods to hurry up your 2021 refund, in line with tax consultants.
Test your return for errors
One of many best methods to keep away from refund delays is double-checking your return, consultants say.
“Half of the issues are from taxpayers not offering correct info,” mentioned Eric Pierre, an Austin, Texas-based licensed public accountant, proprietor of Pierre Accounting and co-host of the CPA Huddle podcast. “The IRS is a scorching mess, however you are not serving to your self with errors.”
The backlog of unprocessed returns consists of points triggering a handbook evaluate, in line with the IRS, together with many stimulus examine errors, and the company is fixing “considerably extra errors” than in earlier years.
There could also be related points because the IRS is attempting to reconcile the 2021 stimulus examine and advance little one tax credit score funds, Harris mentioned.
“I’ve considerations it is going to create one other important backlog along with the backlog that already exists,” he mentioned.
Nevertheless, the IRS is sending varieties to assist filers who acquired these funds: Letter 1649 for little one tax credit and Letter 6475 for stimulus checks.
If these letters match your return, it is much less more likely to get marked for evaluate and delay your refund, Harris mentioned.
The identical goes for quarterly estimated funds and different tax varieties, akin to your W-2 for revenue or 1099-R for retirement plan withdrawals. When you’re lacking paperwork, you may obtain your free IRS transcript to confirm varieties or numbers from final 12 months’s return.
Specialists additionally recommend utilizing an IRS transcript to double-check the quantities out of your little one tax credit score and stimulus examine letters.
When you declare the earned revenue tax credit score or extra little one tax credit score, you may count on your refund by early March, in line with the IRS.
Identification theft delays
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One other difficulty which will trigger tax refund delays is getting flagged for identification theft.
The IRS marked 5.2 million refunds for fraud in 2020, in line with the Taxpayer Advocate Service, with 1.9 million stopped for identification screening.
If the IRS suspects fraud, they are going to mail Letter 5071C or 6331C, holding the return till getting a response. And the method takes longer if it goes to the fallacious handle, Pierre defined.
“Lots of people make errors keying of their condo quantity or neglect they’ve moved lately,” he mentioned. “And mail forwarding does not at all times catch stuff.”
Nevertheless, you may keep away from prolonged delays by making certain the IRS has your up-to-date contact info.
After getting the letter, chances are you’ll confirm your identification on-line, by calling the quantity offered or visiting a neighborhood IRS workplace. However reaching the IRS is probably not simple.
There have been fewer than 15,000 employees to deal with the 240 million incoming calls throughout the first half of 2021 — one particular person for each 16,000 calls — in line with Treasury officers.