As 2020 drew to a close, lawmakers scrambled to provide last-minute relief to Americans struggling in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. The good news is that qualified taxpayers are currently receiving Second round of incentive check,
Down side? Last-minute changes to our tax laws forced the Internal Revenue Service to push back the start date of tax filing season, which means your refund may also be delayed.
When is the IRS Accepting 2020 Tax Returns?
Typically, the IRS begins processing tax returns in late January. This year, however, the agency postponed the start of tax filing season to Friday, February. 12. Until that date, the IRS will not accept or process any tax year 2020 returns.
Cause? Major changes in tax laws Passed on 27 December, which allowed for another round of stimulus checks and other coronavirus aid, among many other things. This means the IRS needs additional time to update its systems to ensure that returns are processed correctly.
“The February 12 start date will give them time to do additional programming,” explained Lisa Green-Lewis, a Certified Public Accountant and Tax Specialist turbo tax,
If filing season is opened without updates to system programming, the issuance of refunds to taxpayers could be delayed, the IRS said in January. 15 Press release, The additional time also ensures that eligible taxpayers will receive any remaining incentive money as recovery rebate credit upon filing their 2020 returns.
How to Get Your Tax Refund ASAP
Delaying the start of tax season ultimately aims to ensure that taxpayers receive any money they owe as quickly as possible. But it also means that the tax season will begin with a backlog of returns ready to process.
Green-Lewis noted that last tax season, about 75% of taxpayers received refunds and the average amount was closer to $3,000. If you owe a refund this year, you should prepare so that you can be one of the first in line when the IRS starts accepting tax returns.
Collect all your tax information now: Depending on your financial situation and family size, filing your taxes can involve considerable paperwork. Make sure you have all of your important tax documents and information available such as W-2s, 1099s, and Social Security numbers for dependents. “Having the right information about when you sit down to do your taxes will also reduce delays in processing your tax refund,” Green-Lewis said.
Complete your tax return early: The IRS isn’t accepting returns, but there’s nothing stopping you from completing your return ahead of time. If you end your taxes early, your tax preparation service will put it on hold and send it by February. 12.
File Online: Green-Lewis said taxpayers should also go online and e-file with direct deposit. “E-File with direct deposit is the fastest way to get your refund,” she said. “The IRS states that they will issue nine out of 10 refunds within 21 days of acceptance with e-file and direct deposit.”