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Checking the Status of Your Federal Tax Refund is Easy

Article Highlights:

  • Federal tax refund status can be checked online.
  • E-file refunds are generally issued within 21 days of filing.
  • Direct deposit provides the quickest refunds.

If your 2016 federal return has already been filed and you are due a refund, you can check the status of your refund online.

Where’s My Refund?” is an interactive tool on the IRS web site at IRS.gov. Whether you have split your refund among several accounts, opted for direct deposit into one account, or asked the IRS to mail you a check, “Where’s My Refund?” will give you online access to your refund information nearly 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

If you e-file, you can get refund information within 24 hours after the IRS has acknowledged receipt of your return. Generally refunds for e-filed returns are issued within 21 days, however not before February 15 for returns with the earned income tax credit and/or the additional child credit. If you file a paper return, refund information will be available within four weeks. When checking the status of your refund, have your federal tax return handy. To access your personalized refund information, you must enter:

  • Your Social Security Number (or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number);
  • Your Filing Status (Single, Married Filing Joint Return, Married Filing Separate Return, Head of Household, or Qualifying Widow(er)); and
  • The exact refund amount shown on your tax return.

Once you have entered your personal information, one of several responses may come up, including the following:

  • Acknowledgement that your return has been received and is in processing.
  • The mailing date or direct-deposit date of your refund.
  • Notice that the IRS has been unable to deliver your refund, on account of an incorrect address. You can update your address online using the “Where’s My Refund?” feature.

The quickest refunds are via direct deposit. Allow additional time for checks to be processed through the mail.

“Where’s My Refund?” also includes links to customized information based on your specific situation. The links guide you through the steps to resolve any issues affecting your refund. For example, if you do not get the refund within 28 days from the original IRS mailing date shown on “Where’s My Refund?,” you can start a refund trace online.

If you have questions related to your refund, please give this office a call.