If there is one good thing about tax season, it is definitely the idea of getting a big tax refund. In 2018, the IRS issued more than 111.9 million refunds that totaled over $324.4 billion dollars. So taxpayers could see themselves getting some extra cash after they file. Unfortunately for taxpayers, the IRS is noticing a lot of myths circulating around social media about the process of receiving your refund and are wanting to make sure taxpayers are aware of the facts when it comes to an IRS tax refund.
First off, there is no secret way of finding out when you will receive your refund. The IRS issues about 9 out of 10 refunds in less than 21 days. The easiest way to check on your refund is through the IRS.gov website tool “where is my refund”. The information on the tool is updated each day, so you can check each morning to see where your refund is. You should only call the IRS tax help hotline when it has been more than 21 days since you e-filed your tax return, it has been more than six weeks since you have mailed in your tax return, or when you check “where is my refund” and it says to contact the IRS.
Along with misinformation about when you’ll get your refund, there are also myths out there about what will help you get a bigger tax refund or other ways you can find out about where your refund is at. Here are just a few.
- Calling the IRS help hotline or a tax professional will give you a refund date. Taxpayers believe that calling one of these two will provide you with a date of when you will receive your refund. It will not. The IRS tool “where is my refund” will give you a more accurate date of when you will receive your refund. If you don’t have access to the internet then you can call the “where is my refund” hotline at (800) 829-1954.
- Ordering a tax transcript is the golden ticket on knowing when you will receive your refund. Ordering a tax transcript will not give you a date of when you will receive your tax refund. Though, taxpayers will order a tax transcript to validate past income and tax filing status for a mortgage, student loans, and small businesses.
- “Where’s my refund” must be wrong because there’s no deposit date yet. The IRS tool “where is my refund” is only updated once a day and is usually updated at night. The IRS issues most of the refunds within 21 days. If you have not received your refund within the 21 days, there could be several reasons why it is taking longer, like if the return wasn’t complete or needs to be further reviewed. The IRS will contact you directly if they are needing further information to process your return.
- “Where is my refund” must be wrong because my expected refund amount is less than expected. If you check the IRS tool “where is my refund” and the refund amount has changed, there could be several reasons why the amount was lowered. You might have had a math error, delinquent federal taxes, state taxes, child support, and student loans. The IRS will also hold a portion of your refund while it reviews items claimed on the return. If your amount is lowered the IRS will send you a letter of explanation of why the adjustments were made.
- Receiving a tax refund this year means there is no need to adjust withholdings for 2019. Everyone needs to do annual tax planning to help avoid unexpected tax outcome for next year. Taxpayers should start planning now for next year, this could mean adjusting your withholdings with your employer or increasing your estimated tax payments. Taxpayers should especially do this if they go an unexpected result from filing their tax return this year.
If you are needing help filing your federal tax return or need help deciding which tax refunds are best for you, Polston Tax can help. Give us a call at 844-841-9857 or click below to schedule a free consultation.