5 Reasons Your Federal Tax Return is DelayedPublished:
Wondering if your tax refund made it in on time? Waiting by the mailbox for that precious check but to no avail? There might have been a delay on your return, for any number of reasons. Here are five of the most common.
1. You Made an Error
One of the main reasons taxpayers experience a delay in their returns is they made an error. It could be something as simple as a spelling error or entering the wrong year, or a bigger goof like miscalculating your math. As the IRS is big on making sure absolutely everything is in order, any little mess up might mean a delay on your federal tax refund status.
Before you send your return off and find yourself impatiently wondering about a delayed tax refund status, go over all your forms and make sure nothing is wrong. Double check spelling, calculations, and dates on every form!
2. You Filed Late
Another reason for a delayed tax refund status is that you filed late. This doesn’t necessarily mean you missed the deadline, either. Towards the end of the tax season, the IRS office is slammed with tax returns. Compare this to early February when most people haven’t even thought about filing yet.
Getting your return in as quickly as possible can prevent a delayed federal tax refund status. The longer you wait, the more likely the IRS will be backed up on their end.
3. Change of Address
Your federal tax refund status might not be delayed at all. Instead, your check might be bouncing around the postal system. If you recently moved, you might have forgotten to inform the IRS. If this is the case, you’ll need to fill out Form 8822. This gives the IRS the current information for your new address. They then can send you the money you are owed.
4. Bank Problems
If instead of a paper check you were expecting a direct deposit for your federal tax refund, there might be an issue with your bank. Perhaps you closed the account or confused account and routing numbers? This could lead to a delay in your refund status.
5. Amended Return
If you realized you made an error on your return in time to file a 1040X, there could still be a delay in your return. This will also affect your refund status. Why does it still cause a delay? The IRS needs to do double the work, delaying your tax refund status for an unknown period of time. Then they must calculate if the amended return is right.
An amended return can delay your federal tax refund status up to 12 to 16 weeks. The best way to avoid this is make sure your return is correct the first time! If you need help, consult a CPA or tax attorney.