Federal Tax Refund Dates

The Internal Revenue Service started sending out federal income tax returns a while back – about two weeks after the tax season started on January 24, 2024. Taxpayers that didn’t claim the earned income tax credit or the additional child tax credit got their refunds way early than those that had filed around the same time.

This is because of the federal law requirement that forces the IRS to hold the tax refund of these taxpayers until mid-March. If you claimed the EITC or ACTC, you’ll need to wait for more than other taxpayers that claimed them. Although not long, the Internal Revenue Service won’t issue your federal income tax refund right away.

For more information, see the refund schedule.

As for the actual dates, there are no specific dates for when tax refunds are issued to taxpayers. The IRS will send tax refunds as fast as the agency processes them. For example, if the IRS processes your return a week after the tax season starts, there is a good chance you’ll have your refund in the following days.

Expected wait times for tax refunds

You can wait anywhere from two weeks to six weeks, depending on how you filed your original tax return and the complexity of it. The tax returns that have lots of information that goes into them like multiple sources of income, itemized deductions, and credits that take time to calculate have all protract the duration of processing. As a result, you’ll get your tax refund at a later date than you would.

That said, even though there isn’t a specific date for when tax refunds are sent out to taxpayers, you can always make speculations as to when you’re going to get your refund.

For the most part, however, taxpayers that filed their tax refunds through a tax preparation service electronically will get their refunds faster. It has been like this ever since the Internal Revenue Service allowed taxpayers to submit their tax returns electronically – and it will be like this for the foreseeable future.

Refund status for individual returns

Whether you’re waiting for your tax refund for one day or one week, you can always check the status of it through the Where’s My Refund tool at the Internal Revenue Service website. The tool provides taxpayers with the necessary information they need to know about their tax refunds. Simply enter your taxpayer identification number i.e. Social Security number or ITIN, filing status, and the exact refund amount, and see the most recent update on your tax return.

The best thing about this tool is that it is updated once a day around midnight and no further updates are shown until the next day. This means checking the status once a day is more than enough and you won’t see sudden changes.

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