2016-2017 Tax Season – Average IRS and State Tax Refund and Processing Times

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The table below shows the average IRS federal refund payment over the last few years. For 2016 the IRS reported that 70% of taxpayers received tax refunds with an average payment of $2,860. They are expecting similar numbers for refund payment s in 2017. My prediction is that due to a stronger economy and higher employment the 2017 average refund payment will be a little lower than last year.


Refund Payment/Filing Year
Average IRS Refund
2017 (est)
$2,840 (est)
2016
$2,860
2015
$2,800
2014
$3,034
 Here is more refund information from the bigger online tax providers – > TurboTax ; H&R Block ;  TaxAct

Generally, if you e-file and use direct deposit, the IRS estimates that you should receive your federal refund between 8 and 21 days after they accept your return, unless the IRS does not send you a notification requesting additional information or an audit notice). The IRS has stated that it issues more than 90 percent of refunds within 21 days (see estimated refund schedule).

Also note that for the 2016-17 tax season the IRS has announced that there will likely be tax refund payment delays. In particular for taxpayers claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) or the Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC) refunds may not be processed until after February 15th in order to perform further identity verification checks.

If you did not select the electronic deposit option, getting a paper check mailed to you adds about a week.  If your return was filed by mail, then your refund can take 4 to 6 weeks from the date the IRS receives a complete and accurate return. Once your return is accepted by the IRS, the IRS processes your refund based on the IRS E-file Refund Cycle Chart. Exact refund dates are based on IRS processing times and can be found in IRS Publication 2043 and IRS Topic 152 for both e-filed and mailed returns.

To find out online when the IRS currently expects to issue your refund, check the IRS “Where’s My Refund?” tool or IRS2Go mobile application which  is updated every night (3am to 6am EST) You’ll need to provide the following information from your tax return : social security number, filing status and the exact whole dollar amount of your expected refund.

Should I call the IRS if I haven’t received my refund?

Unfortunately calling the IRS won’t do anything to speed your refund since their call center staff are not the ones who process the (over 140 million) tax returns. The best option is still to use  check the “Where’s My Refund” page or IRS2Go application. See this article for how the IRS WMR and IRS2Go works and what each status means. If you do need to talk to a real IRS agent, this article contains some useful numbers based on what has worked for others.

When to Expect Your State Tax Refund


State refunds are processed by each individual state, so processing times will vary. As a general rule, you can expect your state tax refund within 30 days of the electronic filing date or the postmark date. To get the current status of your state tax refund, contact your state tax agency or search online for your state’s taxation website. See the table for some standard state refund processing times. Processing begins when the return is received and ends when we post the refund to your account. I will update as states release their latest processing cycle times.

Latest update : The IRS is conducting significantly more ID verification checks to deal with the increase in online tax fraud, which is also causing state tax agencies to add additional security measures resulting in delays in state tax refunds. For example, Hawaii’s taxpayers could see state refunds delayed, while a number of states are telling tax payers not to expect refund before March 1st.

StateE-FILED Return, Refund Processing TimePAPER Filed Return, Refund Processing TimeState Refund Checker
Arizona (AZ)Within 10 days of filingUp to 12 weeksAZ Check Refund Status
California (CA)Up to 2 weeks10 - 12 weeksCA Check Your Refund
Georgia (GA)30-45 business daysUp to 6 weeksGA WMR Site
Illinois (IL)2-3 weeks6 to 8 weeksIL Refund Checker
Louisiana (LA)Up to 60 days12 to 14 weeksLA Refund Status
Ohio (OH)Within 1 week6 to 8 weeksOH Check My Refund
Kentucky (KY)2-3 weeks8 to 12 weeksKY Refund Checker
Maryland (MD)Within 1 week~ 30 days to processMD Refund Checker
New Jersey (NJ)4+ weeks12+ weeksNJ Refund Status Service
New York (NY)Up to 3 weeksUp to 6 weeksNYC Refund Checker
Pennsylvania (PA)Up to 4 weeks8-10 weeksPA WMR Site
Utah (UT)7 to 21 daysUp to 90 daysUT Refund Checker
Virginia (VA)Up to 4 weeks.Up to 8 weeksVA Refund Checker
Average Refund by State

Average Refund by State (Source : Business Insider)

I’m not going to be able to file my taxes in time. What should I do? If you can’t make that mid April deadline for filing your taxes then file an extension. The IRS says it received requests for 11 million extensions, which amounts to about 8% of all tax returns. Taxpayers who ask for an extension get an extra six months to file—your new deadline will be in mid October.  However you still need to make any expected tax liability payments. See this article for more details and restrictions on filing an extension.

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{ 61 comments… read them below or add one }

TK February 20

Hi I hope this helps anyone. I am in Texas and I filed on Jan 25 2017 and was accepted Jan 27 2017. I carry 3 kids and had to wait until Feb 18 2017 to see an update. Well the bars did change I should receive my DD by Feb 28 if not sooner. Also if the IRS has issued you a pin# number please use that when filing so they know its you to move the process along smooth. Again I hope this was helpful to some. :) be blessed

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Ebony February 16

I filed and was accepted on January 27 2017 and with the crazyness of the path act I finally got a update saying processing. Omgosh this is getting on my last nerve!!! I don’t understand why they couldn’t have moved along people who claim their own true kids and gave us our money damn!

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Shervon Shade February 17

Amen to that Ebony! I filed the exact day Jan 27 and finally it says being processed!! I’m not with the fraudulent crap and I only have 1 child with my the same last name so why i have to wait smh

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Mike Jones February 13

Did any body who filed a child last tax season get there refund back early this year 2017

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michelle February 11

i was just wondering why my SC was accepted 2/6/2017 but still says it’s not being processed on the website? We efiled with H&R Block on 2/3/2017 and out federal & VA were accepted immediately, pressed and ready for direct deposit by 2/15/2017. We owe NC but SC still shows as not being processed. How long does it take to start the processing?

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FromKS February 8

My state and federal was accepted 1/28/17 qnd still is processing so tired of waiting this is bs

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Tblunt February 8

Mines too. It makes no since my siblings we all file same day 3 out of 5 got theirs alreadu

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ellen February 7

I e-filed 3 Indiana returns on Feb 1, 2017; mine, and 2 other single standard deduction taxpayers. The two I filed for have been accepted, approved, and given a date of Feb 10,2017 for direct deposit. My return was accepted on Feb 1, 2017, but nothing has changed on WMR status since, still displays “accepted’.

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Laura February 17

My Indiana state was filed electronically on January 30th and was accepted immediately. Has been “in processing” ever since, with no other updates. I called and was told the same thing that the website. It’s frustrating because the website says that returns are being processed in less than 2 weeks and I’m going on week 3 with no updates.

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Spoochie February 7

I filed 1/28/17 in the state of VA, on 2/1/17 it stated return has been received and being processed, when will it post to my account? I filed electronically.

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Arnold February 6

Filed 1/16/17 accepted 1/25/17 Maryland still processing

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Tonda February 7

Yup mine is to. I called and they told me they haven’t started mine yet. And it was accepted on 01/25. I don’t understand the holdup

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Jew February 13

Still waiting as well did you ever receive

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Tonda February 15

no I still haven’t received mines yet. This is ridiculous. They are saying give it til the end of Feb

Elisha Barrows February 5

I filed on 01/30/2017 and my state (Ohio) is processed and being sent I efiled btw.

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Kay September 23

9/21 Filed in March. Still waiting on state refund. I’m in GA.

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Angela Bobo August 20

I filed my Ms. State Tax 2015 in February of 2016. To this day, I still have not received my state tax. The automatic recorder keep saying it under review. Give them 90 daya. It has been 90 days and over

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Dede February 11

I’d call them on this one! They had some security fraud last year!

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Rosemarie June 27

Useful writing ! I am thankful for the info – Does someone know where I might be able to grab a blank a form form to work with ?

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Barb June 19

Has anyone received a refund on an amended Minnesota return? I know it can take up to 6 months, but am curious to see if anyone has received it sooner.

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Kelly July 1

I filled Feb 15 2016 for my regular taxes and found out it could be end of July before I get my state refund.

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Giselle Carter May 26

I’m from MI, and I filed my taxes on March 31 on TurboTax. I got two confirmation texts saying my state and federal both went through. I received my state probably 1-2 weeks after filing, and I still have yet to get my federal.

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Katie May 23

Anyone from MN and still waiting? I use my tax returns to pay summer daycare money as I am a fulltime student/part time worker—-I thought it may be hard to SAVE it for the Summer but its still not here….therefore in just a week I will likely lose my job….It doesnt fit the criteria for MN to expedite my return since I am not facing foreclosure or having my electricity disconnected, I pay my bills! ……………………..filed 2/24 and NOTHING, wondering if there are more from MN here with the same story.

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latrina July 12

Yes..im from mn i filed feb 20,th nothing yet..im conviencei will never get it ..over 4 months..half way through the year

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Keith August 1

It’s august 1st and I filed mine electronically Feb 1st. I’m still waiting for my return. Kinda frustrating

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Tiff August 2

My sister filed hers in January and finally got it 4days ago. I filed mine in april guess I’ll get it at Christmas. Sucky.

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Cyndi May 5

I e-filed on Mar 9th!!! with a very good financial firm….NOOOO refund as yet!!! It is May 5th…I had to show my health insurance coverage which I went through my papers and faxed it to them immediately and they e-filed AGAIN….Ive done everything correctly, how long do I wait??? I had to pay back around 5 years ago, and boy did they get on me by a deadline….When is the government going to be held accountable with their deadlines!!! We aren’t billionaires dodging taxes, we are ordinary hard working middle class people…Come one now, REALLY

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mdres April 27

I filed my taxes on 4/14/16. It’s 4/27 – received my federal last week but didn’t receive my state yet (maryland). Anyone else in maryland seeing delays? Mine still just says processing.

Seeing the posts here, perhaps 10+ days is not so bad yet…

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mdres April 27

I filed my taxes on 4/14/16. It’s 4/27 – received my federal last week but didn’t receive my state yet. Anyone else in md seeing delays?

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Ernie Thomas April 27

What “booming economy?” Slipping into recession…slowest growth out of a recession and heading back into another one. Lowest LPR in 50+ or so years. Wow. Came here to find info, and you start off by saying something you have no clue about.

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ANTORIA April 12

I filed january11,2016 my taxes went into review the irs told me to wait 6 to 8 weeks my 8 weeks was up April 9,2016 now their saying allow and additional 12 weeks what’s going on somebody please tell me it don’t take 12 weeks 4real

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Tiffany March 31

I did mine March 10th and it was accepted, but it is still being processed, it said within 3 weeks, but 3 weeks came, and still nothing. Im in OK

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Lindsey Laden March 22

I did mine Jan 22nd and still have not received a thing. A letter, something telling me there is a problem, no notice. I did receive my Federal though. I have tried calling, I have tried online chat, I have tried getting a pin number. Nothing Nothing Nothing!!!

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harry March 19

almost a month “still being processed” WTF!!!

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Kellie March 18

I completed my taxes on March 2nd but I still haven’t heard anything. I’m getting worried.

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shelle bickel March 13

So crazy…in California filed 1/23/2016 got our federal back but still no state….so frustrating

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Lindsey Laden March 22

Same here

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Michelle April 26

Same here in MS

Sydney. P June 7

Same here – UT

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PetorriA burden March 10

Did mines Feb16 ain’t heard nothing yet

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jim March 4

did mine feb 9 2016 still wating 03/04/16 this really is frustrating

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Rachel March 8

I filed the same day as you & I’m still waiting as well. I’m in GA. Frustrating!

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Andy (Author) March 8

Thanks both. For GA processing times can be as long as 30-45 business days

Desiree February 25

Did my taxes on the 19th, accepted same day, have direct deposit still haven’t recieved. As of today wmr stated instead of the bar that they have received my taxes and they are now being processed bs

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Estevan Cisneros Jr February 12

My return was filed on the 29th of January and I still haven’t received it. Does it really take that long ? It just says it’s being processed.

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crystal February 14

Mine is still saying the same thing! Annoying!! I filed on the 28th.

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yeuri February 23

Mine is same…….

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Kimberly c. March 2

Same here, really frustrating!

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Sammy Ginorio February 10

Hey my boyfriend file is tax return on January 22 its start being process january 26 go to where is my Refund today day still processing wtf….this is a shame

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Lauren May 13

I filed my taxes at the end of January. Got my federal within a week. My state needed further review which could take 90 days. Which here we are 90 days later May. I called the IRS today n now they are saying it could take up to another 30 days for processing. I’m not sure what is goin on. What can they just keep adding time?

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Dolores April 7

Im not understanding how they haven’t yet reviewed my state taxes and getting ready to get more filers it really going to be a delay its not right to some of us we got to live to

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Lauren April 12

I filed February 2nd, and it’s now APRIL 12th!!!
This is freakin Ridiculous!
I called the tax advocates, they told me that I “should” have an answer about my money by April 13th, if not, they will contact the to see what’s the hold up, that they may need my 1040 x from my school..I asked if I can just send it to the IRS NOW so I don’t have to wait for that answer, they said no! Then they mentioned that even if I don’t get my money, the IRS has an additional 30 days to process after the April 13th date!! What??!!
The government never sleeps on taking my taxes out my paycheck but yet makes me wait over 2 months to at least “get back to me about when my tax refund will be processing”?
Somebody is going to hear from me and/or my lawyer if this return doesn’t come before may!

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Lauraanne April 29

That is why they say we should set up our deductions so that we break even and do not get a refund. If we are paying in more than we should be its like giving the IRS a loan, but we don’t get the interest from it…..however when the shoe is on the other foot and we owe the IRS, the interest rate we pay is RIDICULOUS! We should all try to break even, and not loan the government our hard earned money interest free!

Megan April 6

I filed electronically back in the beginning of February. It’s been two months and I have yet to receive my state refund. No one can give me any info other than “it’s processing” which is not helpful at all. Why so long this year?

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Angela4040 April 24

They say cuase some onliners from other countrys stealing information on irs.gov site but i have filed the jan 19 accepted the 20 of jan an still in processing they said lots were spit out cuase problems on there end i said well shit its aprl all ready wtf!!!

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michael March 31

I filed my taxes feb. 3 and still haven’t received anything.

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Thisissad April 3

I’m in the same boat as you. This is horrible! The government and the people in the powerful seats what Americans to be productive citizens, how can we? When the IRS is still processing over 100 millions tax returns months later without feedback. I’m just starting a new job, and I am a single mother. I have necessary things to do with my tax return “thats due to me” I need to survive in this cruel world where the rich gets richer and so what for the rest of us.! I’m truly disappointed n my government right now.

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shawn March 27

I filed 8 wks electronically as well still havent recieved a date for deposit.

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shae March 20

I e filed 8 weeks ago and still haven’t heard anything when can I expect it

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Jessica May 3

Me and my husband also live in ms. We filed in January 2016 we received our federal return in February. They said it could take up to 90 days to get our state refund back. Well 90 days is up and still no check. This makes the second year of not gettin state back. Can they keep our state refund bc he’s a felon?

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Angela Bobo August 20

Glad to see your review. Filed mines in Feb. of 2016 and still getting the same recording.

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