The IRS is warning American taxpayers not to pay their refunds by the specified date when they file their returns in early 2023.

The tax agency recently said that some returns may need additional time to be processed, and may take longer to process. The announcement comes as millions of taxpayers are still waiting for their returns to be processed from the previous filing period, with the backlog of returns at the IRS growing even more last year, according to a government watchdog agency.

The warning notice comes as taxpayers will soon begin filing their 2022 tax returns, with the IRS opening the filing season in January. Although the IRS has not yet announced when it will begin accepting tax returns next month, many taxpayers are filing as soon as possible to receive their expedited refunds — refunds that are often used to pay off debt, to pay bills or to do so. big purchase.

Last year, nearly 110 million households received an average refund of nearly $3,200, according to data from the tax agency. But the IRS is warning Americans not to count on getting that verification on a certain date in early 2023.

“The IRS warns taxpayers not to rely on a certain date for their 2022 federal tax refund, especially when making large purchases or paying bills,” the tax agency said in November.

However, most refunds are sent within three weeks, according to the IRS. But some problems can slow down tax returns, such as paying taxes by paper, which must be processed manually and can take six months or more to complete, the agency said. And returns that claim certain tax credits, such as the earned income tax credit, may take longer for filers to process.

A smaller review in 2023

The IRS also warns that taxpayers may receive smaller bills in 2023 due to the expiration of many pandemic benefits that were designed to help Americans cope with the crisis.

That means millions of households could get a refund shock when they file their 2022 returns early next year. The average refund of nearly $3,200 this year is up 14% from the previous year – but the average refund at the beginning of next year is likely to return to that amount. last year, around $2,700, according to tax experts.

The last three tax seasons have been brutal for many taxpayers, with millions of returns in limbo as the pandemic poses challenges for the IRS. The tax agency is hiring thousands of new employees with the goal of being better prepared for the 2023 tax year.

The number of tax returns still being processed rose to 12.4 million in September, up from 1.9 million returns a year ago, according to the Treasury Board, the watchdog agency. That means millions of Americans have delayed filing their tax returns, the agency noted.

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