News: The IRS Is Processing Refunds. Here’s How Long It’ll Take
It’s tax time. Here’s when you can expect your refund check.
Contributing Writer at Tally
March 11, 2022
Tax time is here, and one of the most popular questions is, “Where’s my refund check?” These checks can sometimes be as much as thousands of dollars, so it’s understandable to wonder when that cash will hit your bank account.
The IRS says you can expect most refunds to be sent out within 21 days of the tax return being processed and approved.
Below, we offer more details on processing times and delivery options so you have a clearer idea of when to expect your refund to arrive.
When will the IRS start sending income tax refunds?
The IRS processes tax refunds in the order it receives them, but a few factors still impact when your return will be processed and queued for refund processing. These variables include:
When you filed your taxes: The earlier you file, the sooner the IRS will get to process your refund.
If you’re claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) or Child Tax Credit (CTC): If you’re claiming either of these credits, it’ll add two to three weeks to the processing time. Other credits may have a similar impact.
If you have existing federal debts: If you have delinquent federal debts, the IRS may apply some or all of your refund to this debt. This can delay your tax refund.
Whether you mailed or e-filed your taxes: The fastest way to go from taxes filed to refund received is by e-filing them. If you mail them, you’re now at the mercy of the Post Office.
I e-filed my taxes. When will my refund come?
If you e-filed your taxes and have no special circumstances, like filing for the EITC or CTC, there is a clear schedule of when the IRS will send your tax refund. The filing and send-out dates are as follows:
Filed by January 24: Refund sent January 31
Filed by January 31: Refund sent February 11
Filed by February 7: Refund sent February 18
Filed by February 14: Refund sent February 25
Filed by February 21: Refund sent March 4
Filed by February 28: Refund sent March 11
Filed by March 7: Refund sent March 18
Filed by March 14: Refund sent March 25
Filed by March 21: Refund sent April 1
Filed by March 28: Refund sent April 8
Filed by April 4: Refund sent April 15
Filed by April 11: Refund sent April 22
Filed by April 18: Refund sent April 29
Filed by April 25: Refund sent May 6
Filed by May 2: Refund sent May 13
Filed by May 9: Refund sent May 20
Filed by May 16: Refund sent May 27
Filed by May 23: Refund sent June 4
The above send-out dates are the day the IRS sends the refund payments. If you opted to receive a paper check, you can expect at least a few extra days for the Post Office to get it to you.
If you opted for a direct deposit, you should see the deposit in your account within days of the IRS submitting it. The exact timing depends on your bank’s policies on handling deposits. Keep in mind that most banks don’t process deposits on the weekends.
Can I track my refund?
Yes, simply navigate to the IRS’ Where’s My Refund page, and click “Check My Refund Status.” Then, enter your Social Security number or individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN), filing status and your exact refund amount to find your refund status.
You can see status updates 24 hours after submitting e-filed taxes or roughly four weeks after mailing it.
What other key tax dates do I need to remember in 2022?
There's’ a handful of key dates to keep in mind when filing your 2021 income tax return, and they’re as follows:
January 24, 2022: 2021 income tax acceptance and processing begins
January 31, 2022: Last day to file your 2021 tax return and avoid a penalty if you failed to pay the last installment of any estimated tax by January 18
April 18, 2022: Last day to file 2021 tax returns and pay taxes due
April 18, 2022: Last day to file Form 4868 to request a six-month income tax filing extension
April 18, 2022: Last day to file Schedule H and pay employment taxes for household staff
April 18, 2022: Estimated tax payments for the first quarter of 2022 due
June 15, 2022: Estimated tax payments for the second quarter of 2022 due
June 15, 2022: Last day for U.S. taxpayers living and working abroad and military personnel outside the U.S. to file 2021 tax returns and pay taxes due
June 15, 2022: Last day for U.S. taxpayers living and working abroad and military personnel outside the U.S. to file Form 4868 to request a six-month income tax filing extension
September 15, 2022: Estimated tax payments for the third quarter of 2022 due
October 17: Last day to file extended 2021 tax return and pay taxes due
File your taxes early to get your refund earlier
Getting your tax return as quickly as possible is the ultimate goal. You can always ensure you get it as early as possible by filing your tax return as soon as you get all your tax documents. Also, you can further expedite the process by doing an e-file and opting for direct deposit.