WMR and IRS2Go Status Differences – Return Received, Accepted or Under Review and Refund Approved versus Refund Sent

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On my post covering the IRS Refund Cycle Schedule I am seeing a lot of comments around the refund processing status’ on the IRS Where is My Refund (WMR) website or on the IRS2Go mobile app. Clearly there is a lot of confusion as people anxiously await their refunds and are unclear of how the IRS is processing their returns. In fact if you search tax forums one of the most common questions are around differences between the 3 WMR status trackers which are Return Accepted, Refund (Return) Approved and Refund Sent (with direct deposit date). The tracker is updated daily (~3AM EST) so there is no need to constantly check it.

You can start using the WMR website or IRS2Go app to start checking on the status of your return 24 hours after the IRS receives your e-filed return or 4 weeks after you mail a paper return. As the IRS processes your return it will progress through the 3 stages: (1) Return Received, (2) Refund Approved and (3) Refund Sent.

Here are more details on each status and what each one means:

Status Bar 1: Return Received is the same as “Return Accepted by the IRS.” This means that your tax return has passed initial screens by the IRS covering rudimentary fraud checks, verifying your SSN and ensuring no obvious red flags on your return.  Your tax return will remain in this status while the IRS processes it in more detail to ensure it is compliant and the refund amount is accurate. Your refund can remain in the status for a while if it is complex or the IRS feels further information is needed.  The IRS is however saying it processes most returns in 21 days if your return is not flagged for further review.

There is no need to follow-up with the IRS if the WMR tool shows the status of Return Received. If this status is showing, the IRS is processing your return and further calls or letters won’t speed up the process. There is no status of “under review” so sometimes your status may be stuck in this status (or even disappear) while the IRS completes its reviews

WMR Status GraphicStatus Bar 2: Refund Approved status will appear if your tax return checks out and and your return has been approved for payout by direct deposit or check. A personalized refund date will be provided and the WMR status will now be Refund Approved. If you elected the direct deposit (DD) option for your refund, you will get a date by which it should be credited to your account. While the IRS does promise that it will process most returns in under 21 days, it could take longer if complications come up. This delay is what frustrates most tax payers as the IRS does at times provide limited information if errors in your return are spotted. While some information is provided on WMR and IRS2Go, the IRS will generally mail you for further detailed information. This could add days, weeks and even months if lots of additional information is need. So ensure your tax return is as accurate when filing.

Status Bar 3: Refund Sent as the name implies means the IRS has sent your refund to your nominated bank account(s). It will give you a specific date the refund was sent. Direct Deposit payment are generally processed within 5 days. I.e. the money will be in your bank available for withdrawal within 5 days of the refund sent date. Contact your bank or financial institution only if you have not received your return after 5 days of the IRS refund sent date. If you requested a paper check this means your check has been mailed and could take 7+ days for you to receive this via mail. It could take weeks if your mailing address is outside the US.

Here is more refund information from the bigger online tax providers – > TurboTax ; H&R Block ;  TaxAct

Help! My WMR status bar has disappeared

Per the IRS, the WMR tracker graphic may disappear or not be shown if your return falls under IRS review after it is received (Status Bar 1: Return Received) because additional information is needed for your return. An explanation or instructions will be provided depending on the situation. This can happen even if you previously checked WMR and it showed the status as “Return Received.” The IRS still has your return but things are essentially on hold until the IRS gets the additional information from you to continue processing your return . You will either get directions on WMR or IRS2Go or the IRS will contact you by mail. Follow the provided instructions and return any additional information ASAP to get your potential refund and reduce any further delays. Talk to your accountant, tax advocate or tax professional if you are not clear on what the IRS is asking for.

Here a sampling of some comments and responses from readers of this site on this topic and WMR refund status/processing:

(From Dorothy) We wait and wait all year long then bam we file we get a big refund and we are told 10 to 21 days and what do we do. We sit here looking at our refund tracker we log on to WMR site and we check wmr2go we just keep watching and waiting for our Money. Then just when we are not looking something changes meaning our bars move and we check our accounts and there’s our Money. But here’s what bugs me the most. The IRS is looking at us and sees we owe them and way before we get notice or told what to do next. They are saying NOW you must pay. What if we made them WAIT. Or when a letter comes we send it back with a response we will get back to you in 5 to 10 days. Wonder what they would think. But here’s for all of us ITS OUR MONEY AND WE WANT IT NOW
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(From Brandi on her 2014-2015 WMR experience) To those who have been told that your returns are under review I e-filed on Jan 5th last year but of course it wasn’t sent to IRS until Jan 20th (when IRS starts accepting returns). It was accepted the next day. My bars on WMR disappeared after about about a week and have not reappeared since. I was informed on 2/10 that my return went under review on 2/2 and to expect it in 6-8 weeks. On 2/24 I received a [IRS] letter stating that I needed to verify my identity before my return could be processed further. I called and sat on hold for 1hr 45 min before talking to a person. I verified my name, social security number, birthdate, address, fathers name, childs birthdate, childs social security number and the total amout of my return. By the way, none of my personal info has changed in the last 10 years. I was then told that my return would now be returned to the processing department to be completed and to expect it within 6 weeks from that day. Yes, 6 more weeks from the date i verified my information. Unless there is some other problem, then i will be contacted by mail to provide whatever else is needed. This was the worse case scenario she said but was preparing me just in case. I doubt it will be 6 more weeks or that they will need anything else but I am so upset that I have been waiting since Jan 20th and it took over one month just to receive a letter to verify info that has not changed in over 10 years. Now I’m waiting 6 more weeks for my money. I know everyones situation is different but if you have been waiting a while or were told yours is under review or you need to do identity verification, this is possibly what you could expect to happen with your return. Bottom line just don’t depend on the IRS to be fast this year. Some are getting their returns quick and then there are some like myself that will be waiting much longer!
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(From Mary Elizabeth) I understand that this is a stressful situation. My own bars had disappeared for six days now while I was accepted on the 21st. I am due a refund according to Turbotax by 2/11.  The number and extension provided below has personally helped me through my own tax problems, as well as my friends and loved ones; while the general or common number gives millions of people the “automated voice” and “runaround”.

If someone to reach a real person in the IRS office, do the following:

1) First, make sure the time is at 7amEST in the morning. (Note: this is the perfect time to reach someone to avoid LONG wait times!)
2) Call 1-800-829-0582 and press extension 633 (Don’t worry, this department is the quickest and will still research your situation to give you a definite answer)
3) Good Luck
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(From Mike P.)
 Ok I know everyone is saying the same thing similar to my problem too, which does relieve me a little. But I filed mine on the 7th of January, accepted on the 11th and WMR still says only accepted. I have been checking daily for the past week with the same result. After researching this a bit more and reading some of y’alls comments, yes I confirmed it that the IRS told me on the phone today that they didn’t start processing refunds until they opened on the 19th. Which means within 21 days of the 19th my dd should arrive and to keep checking the wmr link at irs.gov. However, some of you posted you got yours accepted on a later date and say your dd will arrive today (29th)?? I also believe that! Esp. since I filed before those people did?! Another positive was someone said refunds are deposited on Fridays and at the end of the month too and today is Friday the 29th! I try to be patient but we have plans and it is hard to keep waiting like this! I am hopeful that maybe I’ll get mine today too!

Some of these examples are likely what you are facing so hopefully the answers here can help you. Please leave a comment below if you need more feedback or want to share your experience.

Some useful IRS Phone Numbers to Get More Information on Your Return and/or Refund
Talk To a Live Person
(800) 829-0582 Ext. 652

Tax Help Line
(800) 829-1040
for human? press 1 for English, then 0, 0 again

Refund Hotline
(800) 829-1954

TeleTax
(800) 829-4477
Taxpayer Advocate Service Hotline
1-877-777-4778

Turbo Tax Customer Service Line
(877) 908-7228

H&R Block Customer Service Line
(800) 472-5625

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42 Comments on "WMR and IRS2Go Status Differences – Return Received, Accepted or Under Review and Refund Approved versus Refund Sent"

daniel

I was told by tax advocate that check was mailed april 6th but the status bar on irs.gov says my return is still being processed is this possible did be misinform me

Angel
Wow….first of all I must say that God is good! After patiently waiting my 21 days, keeping one bar, standard message we have received your return and it is being processed, tax topic 152, my one little bar vanished. So you best believe I’m on the phone on my 21st day calling the irs. Very nice lady asked a bunch of questions, put me on hold to see what was up, got back on the phone and told me my hubby and I needed to verify our identity because of our filing status this year and all the theft problems going on it raised a flag. You’d think that they would have mailed me something and you KNOW it didn’t take 21 days for them to decide this was what needed to be completed in order to fully process or return, but did they?…….Nope sure didn’t the only way I… Read more »
Want to know

WMF showed accepted 3/4 and now I go to check and the bars have disappeared. From researching the internet I guess it means my return is under review. My question is I owe an amount from last year and have been doing installment payments. I know this amount is owed and they will take this from my return this year but could this be the reason for the review? Because the return amount will change? Or would it be under review for something else? What has you alls reason for reviewing been? Has anyone seen it go back to having bars without having to do anything?

Jamie

More than likely means you are under review. They could be looking at your balance owed and just adjusting. A LOT of people have been under review because of Obamacare for 1095A. That’s what mine was. I had to wait for a letter and then fax some papers. I was told another 3-6 weeks. I got a direct deposit date after a month.

Same Story

Just because your bars are gone doesn’t automatically mean review. You may be on a weekly cycle rather than daily which takes longer to process. Many people have had bars disappear then come back a couple days later. If you just filed on the 4th you may still be fine. Try not to stress over the bars just yet :)

Jeff

I filed on 2/1 through TurboTax and included a verification pin as my return was compromised through identity theft last year. This year, my return was “Accepted” immediately by both the IRS and the state, however after a few days the “Accepted” bar transitioned to “Your return is being processed” with no resolution date provided. It remained in that status for nearly a month. Today, I called the 800-829-0582 x633 number and was speaking with a helpful human within 10 mins. She verified several pieces of information and put me on hold for about 5 mins. When she returned, she had a definitive direct deposit date for me. In my case, it was the prior identity theft matter that, not surprisingly I guess, prompted them to hold the return for further review.

Tiffany
On 2/3 I e-filed my return, on 2/5 my tax provider calles me and tells me my return was denied by the IRS, on 2/6 I send IRS a copy of my return,DL, and SSN, on 2/10 I get a letter in the mail stating I need to verify my identity which is done the same day 2/10, I called the 1800 number they provided on the letter, I answer a number of questions and was told the red flag was lifted and he will send information that I verified my identity, and in about a week I can start Useing “where’s my refund” I waited a week and started Useing “where’s my refund” it kept saying that the information I entered was invalid to try again, on 2/25 I call the 1800 number again and got someone and she said that yes that I did prove my idenity on… Read more »
Lisa

Well mines say processing like I’m waiting on a date but then it say topic 152 wats that all about

Tiffany

Mine is saying the same thing and they couldn’t give me any info when I called or when I clicked the 152 tax topic.

Tonya

topic 152 just means that you are doing direct deposit

Ashley

Means ur being audited. Mine was the exact same

dawanna

I got that to. Idk what to say about the IRS this year. Smh but they say that is only information about direct deposit.

Doris smith

Mine used to say when I got on wmr that it was still processing and that they will let me know when a date is available, now it says they received it and its been processed with a 152 topic and a 9001 code wtf

Charlene

That to id right

Jaclyn

I meant still have NOT gotten it

Jaclyn

My status said it was sent on the 10th. I still have gotten it. I went back on the irs website and now it says my refund is $0! How is that possible?

tiara

Means you dont have a refund due to some obligations you may owe for instance student loans, child support or if you owe any federal agencies they took your refund same thing happened to my mama this year hers was deposited on feb 18 but never got it when she checked it said 0.00 $ due to student loans

Tommy s.
Screw this next year im finding an off the books job. Monday is my 21 days my status bar dissapeared and before that didnt move from the first spot. I just wish I knew if I had to verify my I.d. all I want is my little b.s. rwfund. I got my state money 5 days after filing but h&r block took their 250$ fees out right away so I only had 300$ left. I went to h&r block thinking I could get an instant refund like they did years ago wherw u file and the give u a loan on your refund right away. I went they said the dont do that anymore so they said 8-21 days I should have just went with turbo tax or something last year I did mine with turbo tax and itbwas like either 9 or 19$ and I got my funds in… Read more »
kay

Did you get a DD yet.? @Tommy S

tiffany

So I had a ddd date on WMR for 2/10/2016. Its 2/12/2016 and I never got it. I called the irs yesterday and said it was sent today I called says I’m under review. Is that possible?

latina

tiffany same with me, i had a DDD for 2/18 never got my money, woke up 2/19 with 3 bars no money, i call treasury they said no refund was send out till today, so im confised

Melissa

Obama care has alot to do with it too It’s part of the reason its slow.I won’t get my refund for atleast another 4 to 6 wks.

Al guzman

My bars says my checks was mailed out may 27 is jun 13 no check yet

Charlene

Why you say that? Did IRS tell you that? I’m also waiting.

Jamie

I had the same problem. I got a letter, had to fax in more information with the 1095A and then had to wait another month before I got a ddd date and my bars reappeared on wmr

Kia Drake

Yes I called they said was the 1095A form for I obamacare ! I had my tax preparer send that to a fax number and yesterday all my bars went missing . No error code because when I called i verified everything and they said no issue other than the form . Tuesday will make 21?days so I’ll call to make sure everything else is ok .. Just need to get caught up on somethings :(

Jazzy
So I filed on jan11 and was accept Jan12. My 21 days was up on the 8 of feb. my bars have been missing on where’s my refund snice the 25 of Jan. I called yesterday and was told my refund is being process and that’s all the information they could give me. Called to say got the same person on the phone and he said didn’t I speak with you yesterday and ask you to call back in a week if refund wasn’t receive. Nothing has change. Then got off the phone. I did not feel comfortable with his answer so I call the irs again and was able to speak to another person that told me she doesn’t know what’s going on with my refund, because she see no information on it. She can’t even see if it was in review it was like it’s in limbo. That… Read more »
Ciara

Did u receive yet? I’m the same. I got this stupid letter that took a week to get here from an address down the street from me. It doesn’t even tell me to do any thing else…

Erica Davis

this is terrible and all we keep getting is bs answers ..

Tavie

This is very aggravating

darlene

How longs do the orange bars disappear for?

Jamie

Mine disappeared for about a month. Only after I faxed the obamacare papers and they processed it. Finally have a dd date. Yah.

Ashley

I just called because I filed on the 27th through tax act and I heard they had their systems hacked. So I figured that’s issue with mine taking so long. But she said it just looks like the system hasn’t got to it yet. And I did have a new address from the one they have so that could have put it in the delay stack as well. I was told all I can do is wait. ugh!

dorothy
Okay I am Back Really CONFUSED That My head feels like a War…. I (We File) Jan 19th 2016 Everything Was Accepted Now I always Use Turbo Tax I kept Looking at Refund Tracker Nothing Was there My My Account information where to send Our Refund DD… Well Monday Feb 1 2016 Theres a Note Stating Refund Was Sent To National Penn Bank… So I call SBBTPG They Said what ever was said By Turbo Tax Is Correct now you’ll Just have to wait Check WMR and Give it No Later the FEB 9th I Call Our bank they said They won’t see anything till close to Date Posted…. Okay I got so Excited I made myself Tired…. Now I checked SBBTPG Nothing Yet I checked My Account Nothing Just Yet and Turbo Tax Said In Refund Tracker More about Refund Was Sent…. Confusing Just Venting I suppose… Like Mom… Read more »
MissMe7times

I tried to check IRS refund tool about 4:15 this morning and it was unavailable. I suppose they were updating the sight but still nothing on my end. I filed on Jan 15, 2016 and was accepted that same day. I know they didn’t start looking at my return until Jan 19. As of today,. I have been waiting for 10 business days for the bar to move. My fiance’s is doing the same thing and he filed on the 20th and was accepted on the 20th but nothing has progressed with him either. I also know that if you check the status more than 3 times in a day, your bar will disappear and you will get the standard refund page instead of the progression WMR bar.

wpDiscuz

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