2012 IRS e-file Refund Cycle Chart

2012 IRS e-file Refund Cycle Chart for Tax Year 2011


* This is the projected date that the refund will be direct deposited or mailed. It may take up to 5 additional days for the financial institution to post the refund to your account, or for mail delivery

IRS Refund Chart for 2011

IRS accepts your return (by 11:00 am) between… Projected Direct Deposit Sent* Projected Paper Check Mailed*
Jan 17 and Jan 18, 2012 Jan 25, 2012 Jan 27, 2012
Jan 19 and Jan 25, 2012 Feb 1, 2012 Feb 3, 2012
Jan 26 and Feb 1, 2012 Feb 8, 2012 Feb 10, 2012
Feb 2 and Feb 8, 2012 Feb 15, 2012 Feb 17, 2012
Feb 9 and Feb 15, 2012 Feb 22, 2012 Feb 24, 2012
Feb 16 and Feb 22, 2012 Feb 29, 2012 Mar 2, 2012
Feb 23 and Feb 29, 2012 Mar 7, 2012 Mar 9, 2012
Mar 1 and Mar 7, 2012 Mar 14, 2012 Mar 16, 2012
Mar 8 and Mar 14, 2012 Mar 21, 2012 Mar 23, 2012
Mar 15 and Mar 21, 2012 Mar 28, 2012 Mar 30, 2012
Mar 22 and Mar 28, 2012 Apr 4, 2012 Apr 6, 2012
Mar 29 and Apr 4, 2012 Apr 11, 2012 Apr 13, 2012
Apr 5 and Apr 11, 2012 Apr 18, 2012 Apr 20, 2012
Apr 12 and Apr 18, 2012 Apr 25, 2012 Apr 27, 2012
Apr 19 and Apr 25, 2012 May 2, 2012 May 4, 2012
Apr 26 and May 2, 2012 May 9, 2012 May 11, 2012
May 3 and May 9, 2012 May 16, 2012 May 18, 2012
May 10 and May 16, 2012 May 23, 2012 May 25, 2012
May 17 and May 23, 2012 May 30, 2012 Jun 1, 2012
May 24 and May 30, 2012 Jun 6, 2012 Jun 8, 2012
May 31 and Jun 6, 2012 Jun 13, 2012 Jun 15, 2012
Jun 7 and Jun 13, 2012 Jun 20, 2012 Jun 22, 2012
Jun 14 and Jun 20, 2012 Jun 27, 2012 Jun 29, 2012
Jun 21 and Jun 27, 2012 Jul 4, 2012 Jul 6, 2012
Jun 28 and Jul 4, 2012 Jul 11, 2012 Jul 13, 2012
Jul 5 and Jul 11, 2012 Jul 18, 2012 Jul 20, 2012
Jul 12 and Jul 18, 2012 Jul 25, 2012 Jul 27, 2012
Jul 19 and Jul 25, 2012 Aug 1, 2012 Aug 3, 2012
Jul 26 and Aug 1, 2012 Aug 8, 2012 Aug 10, 2012
Aug 2 and Aug 8, 2012 Aug 15, 2012 Aug 17, 2012
Aug 9 and Aug 15, 2012 Aug 22, 2012 Aug 24, 2012
Aug 16 and Aug 22, 2012 Aug 29, 2012 Aug 31, 2012
Aug 23 and Aug 29, 2012 Sep 5, 2012 Sep 7, 2012
Aug 30 and Sep 5, 2012 Sep 12, 2012 Sep 14, 2012
Sep 6 and Sep 12, 2012 Sep 19, 2012 Sep 21, 2012
Sep 13 and Sep 19, 2012 Sep 26, 2012 Sep 28, 2012
Sep 20 and Sep 26, 2012 Oct 3, 2012 Oct 5, 2012
Sep 27 and Oct 3, 2012 Oct 10, 2012 Oct 12, 2012
Oct 4 and Oct 10, 2012 Oct 17, 2012 Oct 19, 2012
Oct 11 and Oct 17, 2012 Oct 24, 2012 Oct 26, 2012
Oct 18 and Oct 24, 2012 Oct 31, 2012 Nov 2, 2012
Oct 25 and Oct 31, 2012 Nov 7, 2012 Nov 9, 2012
Nov 1 and Nov 7, 2012 Nov 14, 2012 Nov 16, 2012
Nov 8 and Nov 14, 2012 Nov 21, 2012 Nov 23, 2012
Nov 15 and Nov 21, 2012 Nov 28, 2012 Nov 30, 2012
Nov 22 and Nov 28, 2012 Dec 5, 2012 Dec 7, 2012
Nov 29 and Dec 5, 2012 Dec 12, 2012 Dec 14, 2012
Dec 6 and Dec 12, 2012 Dec 19, 2012 Dec 21, 2012
Dec 13 and Dec 19, 2012 Dec 27, 2012 Dec 31, 2012
Dec 20 and Dec 26, 2012 Jan 3, 2013 Jan 7, 2013

* The IRS does not guarantee a specific date that a refund will be deposited into a taxpayer’s financial institution account or when it will be mailed.

 

2012 IRS e-file Refund Cycle Chart

You can check the status of your refund 72 hours after IRS acknowledges receipt of your e-filed return. For the fastest information call 1-800-829-1954 or 1-800-829-4477.

Based on the date your return was accepted by the IRS, the earliest your refund will be direct deposited or mailed is shown on the chart above. This is a projected date based on normal processing. On the Wednesday prior to the projected date, you can go to www.irs.gov and click on Where’s my refund? to get any changes to the projected date.

tax-refund-check

IRS Holding $153 Million in Undelivered Tax Return Checks

Are you missing yours?

WASHINGTON — In an annual reminder to taxpayers, the Internal Revenue Service announced today that it is looking to return $153.3 million in undelivered tax refund checks. In all, 99,123 taxpayers are due refund checks this year that could not be delivered because of mailing address errors.

Undelivered refund checks average $1,547 this year.

Taxpayers who believe their refund check may have been returned to the IRS as undelivered should use the “Where’s my refund?” tool on IRS.gov. The tool will provide the status of their refund and, in some cases, instructions on how to resolve delivery problems.

Taxpayers checking on a refund over the phone will receive instructions on how to update their addresses. Taxpayers can access a telephone version of “Where’s My Refund?” by calling 1-800-829-1954.

 

IRS Holding $153 Million in Undelivered Tax Return Checks

While only a small percentage of checks mailed out by the IRS are returned as undelivered, taxpayers can put an end to lost, stolen or undelivered checks by choosing direct deposit when they file either paper or electronic returns. Last year, more than 78.4 million taxpayers chose to receive their refund through direct deposit. Taxpayers can receive refunds directly into their bank account, split a tax refund into two or three financial accounts or even buy a savings bond.

The IRS also recommends that taxpayers file their tax returns electronically, because e-file eliminates the risk of lost paper returns. E-file also reduces errors on tax returns and speeds up refunds. Nearly 8 out of 10 taxpayers chose e-file last year. E-file combined with direct deposit is the best option for taxpayers to avoid refund problems; it’s easy, fast and safe.

The public should be aware that the IRS does not contact taxpayers by e-mail to alert them of pending refunds and does not ask for personal or financial information through email.  Such messages are common phishing scams.  The agency urges taxpayers receiving such messages not to release any personal information, reply, open any attachments or click on any links to avoid malicious code that can infect their computers.  The best way for an individual to verify if she or he has a pending refund is going directly to IRS.gov and using the “Where’s My Refund?” tool.

no-refund

Government Shutdown Could Delay Tax Refunds

If Congress can not come to an agreement by midnight Friday the Government will shut down temporarily.

Keep in mind the shutdown, if it happens, will NOT DELAY the due date for taxes of April 18th, 2011!

According to Bloomberg, IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman in a statement made a week ago (3/31).
“We’ve never had a government shutdown in the middle of the filing season before,” Shulman said in testimony before a House Ways and Means subcommittee in Washington. “The closer we get to April 15, the more consideration and factors are at play.”

People who file electronically and opt to receive their returns electronically “should expect to see refunds quickly,” Shulman said on Tuesday.

Tax returns using e-file are automated so if your tax return doesn’t need any special handling and you use the direct deposit option you could receive your tax refund on time. However, if you file a paper return, you are expecting a paper check or your tax return needs special handling (Injured Spouse, Offsets, etc.) expect them to be delayed!

The length of the delay, if any, will depend on how long it takes Congress to agree so that ‘nonessential’ federal employees could return to work.

Approximately 70% of tax returns are now filed electronically.

Tax returns filed with paper generally take six to eight weeks to process, while e-file returns generally take seven to ten days or so.

direct-deposit

Tax Refund Direct Deposit Options

Direct deposit options include deposit into your savings, checking, retirement account or split refunds into two or three accounts and new in 2010 to purchase Treasury / Savings Bonds.

 

Tax Refund Direct Deposit

Using direct deposit of your tax refund ias simple. You just enter your account number and your nine digit ACH/Routing number into your tax return.

Direct deposit is safer, because the money goes directly into your account so no lost checks. The direct deposit usually means you will get your refund a week sooner as well, in some cases in as little as ten days.

 

Splitting Tax Refunds

You may want to split your refund into two or three different accounts. As an example you may want some of your refund to go into savings, some into your checking and some into a retirement fund. Other examples of financial accounts eligible to receive deposits include health savings accounts and Coverdell education savings accounts.

Some prepaid Visa accounts will also let you make a direct deposit into them, check with your account holder to see if this is possible.

Splitting a refund requires tax Form 8888, Direct Deposit of Refund to More Than One Account, to split a tax refund into two or three financial accounts. The form provides instructions.

 

Buying Savings Bonds with Tax Refunds – Form 8888

New in 2010 is the ability to use your tax refund to buy up to $5,000 in low-risk, liquid Treasury Bonds, which earn interest and protect owners against inflation.

The purchased bonds will be issued in the taxpayer’s name. If the refund is a joint refund, the bonds will be issued in the names of both taxpayers. No beneficiary may be selected. The taxpayer need not have a Treasury Direct account to purchase Bonds using this option.

Using Form 8888, the taxpayer enters 043736881 as the routing number and checks the “savings” box. He must use the letters “BONDS” as the account number.
An I Bond request must be a multiple of $50. The taxpayer also needs to designate an account to which he wants the IRS to deposit the balance of his refund. For example, if his refund is $280, the taxpayer can request that $250 be used to purchase I Bonds and that the remaining $30 be deposited into a checking, savings or investment account.

In cases where a refund is an exact multiple of $50 but less than $5,000, the taxpayer may direct that all of the refund be applied to I Bond purchases by filling out the direct deposit information on his tax return and simply not using Form 8888.

The savings bonds will be mailed to the taxpayer.

Bonds will not be purchased in situations where the taxpayer makes an error figuring his refund, or if the bond request is not a multiple of $50 or the refund is offset for any reason. In these cases, the requested purchase will be cancelled and the entire refund mailed to the taxpayer in the form of a check.

Once the IRS has processed a tax return and placed an order for I Bonds, the taxpayer can inquire about the status of his bond purchase by calling the Treasury Retail Securities Site at 1-800-245-2804.

 

Individual Retirement Arrangements and Tax Refunds

Refunds may be deposited directly into previously established traditional IRAs, Roth IRAs and SEP-IRAs. (They may not be deposited into SIMPLE IRAs.)

The taxpayer should check with his financial institution to confirm that it accepts direct deposits as well as inform the trustee of the tax year to which the IRA should be contributed. For example, if a taxpayer intends for a direct deposit to be designated as a 2009 IRA contribution but fails to inform the trustee, the deposit might be designated as a 2010 contribution. The direct deposit contribution to an IRA must be made prior to April 15 in order to apply to the 2010 tax year.

tax-refund-check

IRS Holding $164.6 Million in Undelivered Tax Refund Checks

Missing Your Tax Refund?

The Internal Revenue Service is looking to return $164.6 million in undelivered tax refund checks. A total of 111,893 taxpayers are due one or more refund checks that could not be delivered because of mailing address errors.

“We want to make sure taxpayers get the money owed to them,” said IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman. “If you think you are missing a refund, the sooner you update your address information, the quicker you can get your money.”

A taxpayer only needs to update his or her address once for the IRS to send out all checks due. Undelivered refund checks average $1,471 this year, compared to $1,148 last year. Some taxpayers are due more than one check.

The average dollar amount for returned refunds rose by just over 28 percent this year, possibly due to recent changes in tax law which introduced new credits or expanded existing tax credits, such as the Earned Income Tax Credit.

 

IRS Holding $164.6 Million in Undelivered Tax Refund Checks

If a refund check is returned to the IRS as undelivered, taxpayers can generally update their addresses with the “ Where’s my refund?” tool. The tool also enables taxpayers to check the status of their refunds. A taxpayer must submit his or her Social Security number, filing status and amount of refund shown on their 2009 return. The tool will provide the status of their refund and, in some cases, instructions on how to resolve delivery problems.

“If you think you are missing a refund, the sooner you update your address information, the quicker you can get your money.”

Taxpayers checking on a refund over the phone will receive instructions on how to update their addresses. Taxpayers can access a telephone version of “Where’s My Refund?” by calling 1-800-829-1954.

While only a small percentage of checks mailed out by the IRS are returned as undelivered, taxpayers can put an end to lost, stolen or undelivered checks by choosing direct deposit when they file either paper or electronic returns. Taxpayers can receive refunds directly into their bank, split a tax refund into two or three financial accounts or even buy a savings bond.

The IRS also recommends that taxpayers file their tax returns electronically, because e-file eliminates the risk of lost paper returns. E-file also reduces errors on tax returns and speeds up refunds. E-file combined with direct deposit is the best option for taxpayers; it’s easy, fast and safe.

The public should be aware that the IRS does not contact taxpayers by e-mail to alert them of pending refunds and that such messages are common identity theft scams. The agency urges taxpayers not to release any personal information, reply, open any attachments or click on any links to avoid malicious code that will infect their computers. The best way for an individual to verify if she or he has a pending refund is by using the “ Where’s my refund?” tool.

e-file taxes from home

What Happens After You File Your Taxes

Most taxpayers have already filed their federal tax returns, but many may still have questions. Here’s what the IRS wants you to know about refund status, recordkeeping, mistakes and what to do if you move.

 

Tax Refund Information

You can go online to check the status of your 2009 refund 72 hours after IRS acknowledges receipt of your e-filed return, or 3 to 4 weeks after you mail a paper return. Be sure to have a copy of your 2009 tax return available because you will need to know your filing status, the first Social Security number shown on the return, and the exact whole-dollar amount of the refund. You have three options for checking on your refund:

  • Click on “Where’s my refund?
  • Call 1-800-829-4477 24 hours a day, seven days a week for automated refund information
  • Call 1-800-829-1954 during the hours shown in your tax form instruction

 

What Tax Records Should I Keep?

Normally, tax records should be kept for three years, but some documents — such as records relating to a home purchase or sale, stock transactions, IRAs and business or rental property — should be kept longer.

You should keep copies of tax returns you have filed and the tax forms package as part of your records. They may be helpful in amending already filed returns or preparing future returns.

 

Change of Address for IRS

If you move after you filed your return, you should send Form 8822, Change of Address to the Internal Revenue Service. If you are expecting a refund through the mail, you should also file a change of address with the U.S. Postal Service.

 

What If I Made a Mistake?

Errors may delay your refund or result in notices being sent to you. If you discover an error on your return, you can correct your return by filing an amended return using Form 1040X, Amended U.S. Individual Income Tax Return.

Visit IRS.gov for more information on refunds, recordkeeping, address changes and amended returns.

  • Publication 552, Recordkeeping for Individuals
  • Form 8822, Change of Address
  • Form 1040X, Amended U.S. Individual Income Tax Return
tax-refund-check

Does the IRS Owe You Money?

Many taxpayers are owed money by the IRS and might not even know about it. 

tax-refund-check

If you have not filed a prior year tax return and are due a refund, you should consider filing the return to claim that refund. If you are missing a refund for a previously filed tax return, you should contact the IRS to check the status of your refund and confirm your current address. If you earned income in the last few years but you didn’t file a tax return because your wages were below the filing requirement, the Internal Revenue Service may have some money for you. The IRS also has millions of dollars in checks that are returned each year as undeliverable.

If the government owes you money and you do not collect it, then it’s unclaimed. This can also happen with banks, credit unions, pensions, and other sources.

Beware of unclaimed money scams. There are people who pretend to be the government and offer to send you unclaimed money for a fee. Government agencies will not call you about unclaimed money or assets. Learn how to spot these types of scams.

 

Unclaimed Refunds by Taxpayers

Some people may have had taxes withheld from their wages but were not required to file a tax return because they had too little income. Others may not have had any tax withheld but would be eligible for the refundable Earned Income Tax Credit. This is true whether your work withholds money from your paycheck automatically or not. The amount of money you can receive depends upon your income and the number of qualifying children you have. If your Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) is under the Income Level in the chart below, then you can qualify for the maximum credit.

  • To collect this money a return must be filed with the IRS no later than three years from the due date of the return.
  • If no return is filed to claim the refund within three years, the money becomes the property of the U.S. Treasury.
  • There is no penalty assessed by the IRS for filing a late return qualifying for a refund.
  • Current and prior year tax forms and instructions are available on the Forms and Publications web page of IRS.gov or by calling 800-TAX-FORM (800-829-3676).
  • Information about the Earned Income Tax Credit and how to claim it is also available on IRS.gov.

 

Undeliverable Tax Refunds by Taxpayers

Were you expecting a refund check but didn’t get it?

  • Refund checks are mailed to your last known address. Checks are returned to the IRS if you move without notifying the IRS or the U.S. Postal Service.
  • You may be able to update your address with the IRS on the Where’s My Refund? feature available here. You will be prompted to provide an updated address if there is an undeliverable check outstanding within the last 12 months.
  • You can also ensure the IRS has your correct address by filing Form 8822, Change of Address, which is available below or can be ordered by calling 800-TAX-FORM (800-829-3676).
  • If you do not have access to the Internet and think you may be missing a refund, you should first check your records or contact your tax preparer. If your refund information appears correct, call the IRS toll-free assistance line at 800-829-1040 to check the status of your refund and confirm your address.

 

Does the IRS Owe You Money?

Additional IRS Links on Unclaimed Money:

Where’s My Refund?

Form 8822, Change of Address

YouTube Videos on Unclaimed Money:

Haven’t Filed a Tax Return in Years?: English  | ASL

10 Things You Should Know About Tax Refunds

Are you expecting a refund from the IRS this year?

The average tax refund stands at just a hair under three thousand dollars. At this time last year, the average was a little over that amount, sitting at $3,030 (the average for last year would later fall to $2,803 as later filers were accounted for).

In previous years, the average tax refund has been in the same range, with the average peaking for the 2009 tax year before slipping:

  • Average 2012 Refund: $2,803
  • Average 2011 Refund: $2,913
  • Average 2010 Refund: $3,003
  • Average 2009 Refund: $3,036
  • Average 2008 Refund: $2,728
  • Average 2007 Refund: $2,699

 

10 Things You Should Know About Tax Refunds

Here are the top ten things you should know about your tax refund.

  • Refund Options You have two options for receiving your individual federal income tax refund: a paper check or a direct deposit.
  • Separate Accounts You may use Form 8888, Direct Deposit of Refund to More Than One Account, to request that your refund be allocated by direct deposit among up to three separate accounts, such as checking or savings or retirement accounts.
  • Paper Return Processing Time If you file a complete and accurate paper tax return, your refund will usually be issued within six weeks from the received date.
  • Returns Filed Electronically If you filed electronically, your refund will normally be issued within three weeks after the acknowledgment date.
  • Check the Status Online The fastest and easiest way to find out about your current year refund is to go to the IRS.gov Web site and click on the “Where’s My Refund?” link available from the home page. You will need your Social Security number, filing status and the exact whole dollar amount of your refund to check the status online.
  • Check the Status By Phone Call the IRS Refund Hotline at 800-829–1954. When you call, you will need to provide your Social Security number, your filing status, and the exact whole dollar amount of the refund shown on your return.
  • Delayed Refund There are several reasons for delayed refunds. For things that may delay the processing of your return, refer to Tax Topic 303 on IRS.gov, which includes a Checklist of Common Errors When Preparing Your Tax Return.
  • Larger than Expected Refund If you receive a refund to which you are not entitled, or one for an amount that is more than you expected, do not cash the check until you receive a notice explaining the difference. Follow the instructions on the notice.
  • Smaller than Expected Refund If you receive a refund for a smaller amount than you expected, you may cash the check, and, if it is determined that you should have received more, you will later receive a check for the difference. If you did not receive a notice and you have questions about the amount of your refund, wait two weeks after receiving the refund, then call 800–829–1040.
  • Missing Refund The IRS will assist you in obtaining a replacement check for a refund check that is verified as lost or stolen. If the IRS was unable to deliver your refund because you moved, you can change your address online. Once your address has been changed, the IRS can reissue the undelivered check. For more information, visit IRS.gov or call 800-829-1040.

 

Track Your IRS Tax Refund Online

Wondering where your refund is or when you can expect to recieve it?The IRS should issue your refund check within six to eight weeks of filing a paper return. If you use e-file and you chose to receive your refund through direct deposit, you should receive it within a week. If you use e-file and a check, your refund should be issued between two and three weeks.Track your Refund here.

 

When to check status…

  • Within 24 hours after we’ve received your e-filed tax return
  • 4 weeks after you mail your paper return
  • “Where’s My Refund?” is updated once every 24 hours

 

What you need…

  • Social Security Number
  • Filing status
  • Exact refund amount