Below is the latest table showing estimated 2016–2017 tax season refund payment dates based on past refund cycles and IRS guidelines. It shows the date your refund will be processed and paid based on the week your return is accepted by the IRS. For refund dates specific to your tax filing go to the Where is my Refund (WMR) page or IRS2Go mobile application. You will need information from your tax return to get your specific refund processing and payment dates. Note that Jan 23rd is when the IRS E-file will go live for the 2016 – 2017 tax season (see other key dates). This is when the IRS will start processing electronic and paper tax returns. Even if you submitted before this date, don’t expect refund processing to take place beforehand.
Tax Refund Delays: Like the previous tax season it looks like a number of tax payers will see refund processing delays. The IRS announced that it may have to hold/delay refunds until mid-February in 2017 for people due to additional anti-fraud safeguards/reviews and newly enacted laws around claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) or Child Tax Credit (CTC).
”This is an important change as some of these taxpayers are used to getting an early refund,” said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen said. “We want people to be aware of the change for their planning purposes during the holidays. We don’t want anyone caught by surprise if they get their refund a few weeks later than in previous years.”
For those impacted by refund delays (and it will be a lot) see the 5000+ comments from prior years below for further ideas/support, including some useful tips and tricks to find out your refund status if you are not getting much insight from the WMR tool. So hang in there if you end up having or have extended delays for getting for your federal tax refund.
For those experiencing ongoing issues or delays with their refunds check out this article on “Why is it taking so long to get my refund.” The IRS has said that phone and walk-in representatives can research the status of your refund only if it’s been 21 days or more since you filed electronically, more than 6 weeks since you mailed your paper return or if the IRS tool Where’s My Refund? directs you to contact them. The WMR tool will also provide an actual refund date as soon as the IRS processes your tax return and approves your refund.
The table below is only for electronically filed returns (e-file) done thorough online tax software providers and assumes your tax return was in order. I.e accepted by the IRS via the WMR tool and status is equal to “Return Received”. Paper filed returns can take considerably longer and would add 1 to 2 weeks to the time frames below. Again, use the the tax refund chart below as a guideline and refer to the IRS WMR tool for specific timeframes related to your return. Also note that it could take much longer to get your refund if the IRS deems your tax return submission needs further reviews or your identity needs to be verified. This would add two to nine weeks to the date range of your refund delivery date.
2017 Tax Season IRS Refund Schedule
|IRS Accepts Return After|
(WMR status = Return Received)
|IRS Return Accepted Before (End Date)||Estimated Refund Date (via Direct Deposit)||Estimated Refund Date (via Paper Check)|
|January 23, 2017||January 27, 2016||February 5, 2016||February 9, 2016|
|January 27, 2017||February 3, 2017||February 14, 2017||February 16, 2017|
|February 3, 2017||February 10, 2017||February 21, 2017||February 23, 2017|
|February 10, 2017||February 15, 2017||February 24, 2017||February 28, 2017|
|February 15, 2017||February 24, 2017||March 7, 2017||March 9, 2017|
|February 24, 2017||March 3, 2017||March 14, 2017||March 16, 2017|
|March 3, 2017||March 10, 2017||March 21, 2017||March 23, 2017|
|March 10, 2017||March 17, 2017||March 28, 2017||March 30, 2017|
|March 17, 2017||March 24, 2017||April 4, 2017||April 6, 2017|
|March 24, 2017||March 31, 2017||April 11, 2017||April 13, 2017|
|March 31, 2017||April 7, 2017||April 18, 2017||April 20, 2017|
|April 7, 2017||April 14, 2017||April 25, 2017||April 27, 2017|
|April 14, 2017||April 21, 2017||May 2, 2017||May 4, 2017|
|April 21, 2017||April 28, 2017||May 9, 2017||May 11, 2017|
|April 28, 2017||May 5, 2017||May 16, 2017||May 18, 2017|
|May 5, 2017||May 12, 2017||May 23, 2017||May 25, 2017|
|May 12, 2017||May 19, 2017||May 30, 2017||June 1, 2017|
|May 19, 2017||May 26, 2017||June 6, 2017||June 8, 2017|
|May 26, 2017||June 2, 2017||June 13, 2017||June 15, 2017|
|June 2, 2017||June 9, 2017||June 20, 2017||June 22, 2017|
|June 9, 2017||June 16, 2017||June 27, 2017||June 29, 2017|
|June 16, 2017||June 23, 2017||July 5, 2017||July 7, 2017|
|June 23, 2017||June 30, 2017||July 11, 2017||July 13, 2017|
|June 30, 2017||July 7, 2017||July 18, 2017||July 20, 2017|
|July 7, 2017||July 14, 2017||July 25, 2017||July 27, 2017|
|July 14, 2017||July 21, 2017||August 1, 2017||August 3, 2017|
|July 21, 2017||July 28, 2017||August 8, 2017||August 10, 2017|
|July 28, 2017||August 4, 2017||August 15, 2017||August 17, 2017|
|August 4, 2017||August 11, 2017||August 22, 2017||August 24, 2017|
|August 11, 2017||August 18, 2017||August 29, 2017||August 31, 2017|
|August 18, 2017||August 25, 2017||September 5, 2017||September 7, 2017|
|August 25, 2017||September 1, 2017||September 12, 2017||September 14, 2017|
|September 1, 2017||September 8, 2017||September 19, 2017||September 21, 2017|
|September 8, 2017||September 15, 2017||September 26, 2017||September 28, 2017|
|September 15, 2017||September 22, 2017||October 3, 2017||October 5, 2017|
|September 22, 2017||September 29, 2017||October 10, 2017||October 12, 2017|
|September 29, 2017||October 6, 2017||October 17, 2017||October 19, 2017|
|October 6, 2017||October 13, 2017||October 24, 2017||October 26, 2017|
|October 13, 2017||October 20, 2017||October 31, 2017||November 2, 2017|
|October 20, 2017||October 27, 2017||November 7, 2017||November 9, 2017|
|October 27, 2017||November 3, 2017||November 14, 2017||November 16, 2017|
|November 3, 2017||November 10, 2017||November 21, 2017||November 23, 2017|
|November 10, 2017||November 17, 2017||November 28, 2017||November 30, 2017|
|November 17, 2017||November 24, 2017||December 5, 2017||December 7, 2017|
|November 24, 2017||December 1, 2017||December 12, 2017||December 14, 2017|
|December 1, 2017||December 8, 2017||December 19, 2017||December 21, 2017|
|December 8, 2017||December 15, 2017||December 26, 2017||December 28, 2017|
|December 15, 2017||December 22, 2017||January 2, 2018||January 4, 2018|
|December 22, 2017||December 29, 2017||January 9, 2018||January 11, 2018|
|December 29, 2017||January 5, 2018||January 16, 2018||January 18, 2018|
If your refund is taking much longer than the above schedule, and assuming your return was accepted by the IRS, please leave a comment below for the benefit of other readers. I can try digging into the reasons if a few people are seeing delays. See here for average refund amounts in 2015-2016 tax season and refund processing times by state
A note about IRS system issues and refund delays: It appears that the IRS is still having issues with processing returns in a timely manner and so a number of people are seeing delays in getting their refunds.The 3000+ comments below confirm this. Of late delays were due to widely reported IRS system issues which constrained the acceptance of new filings and refund processing was dramatically reduced. This was likely the cause behind the lack of movement and disappearing status bars on the WMR and IRS2Go tool. The IRS has said system issues have now been resolved but given the various legacy systems they have and volume of processing I would not be surprised to see continued system problems. The other big issue delaying refunds is the marked increase in tax filing related identity theft and phishing scams. Because of this refund processing is taking longer than expected as returns are more carefully checked and identities verified.
2016-2017 Tax Season – Amended Tax Return Refund Schedule
While the IRS promises to have regular return refunds processed within 21 days for nine out of ten tax payers, it does take quite a bit longer to receive a refund if you amended your tax return. Generally you will have to wait 8 to 12 weeks more for the IRS to process amended returns since they prioritize regular returns. Also note that the standard”Where’s my refund” service from the IRS does not track amended tax return status’. You need to instead use the IRS tool, Where’s My Amended Return.” You can also access the tool via phone by calling 1-866-464-2050. Only call the IRS to follow up on delayed amended return refunds after 12 weeks. The number to call is 1-800-829-1040.
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