The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) aims to have refunds completed for many taxpayers within 21 days.  However, there are some tax returns that may require additional review time and take longer to send out.

By law the IRS, cannot issue refunds before February if you are claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) or the Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC).  The EITC is a financial boost for low to moderate income households in the form of a refundable credit.  To qualify you must meet the requirements for a qualifying child and limits of earned income and adjusted gross income.

Credit Limits for Tax Year 2019:
  • $529 with no qualifying children
  • $3,526 with one qualifying child
  • $5,828 with two qualifying children
  • $6,557 with three or more qualifying children

The anti-fraud law allows additional reviewing time for returns claiming EITC or ACTC to prevent refunds issued to scammers.  The IRS will update their website and the IRS2Go app with projected deposit dates for most EITC/ACTC refund filers by February 22nd.  If you have claimed either of these tax credits you will not see any updates to your refund status until several days after February 15th.  The IRS predicts that most EITC or ACTC refunds should be available in taxpayers’ bank accounts by the first week of March, if direct deposit was chosen and no issues are found with tax returns.

The IRS has a tool on their website called “Where’s My Refund?” or the IRS2Go app that is updated once a day.  You can use this tool to check on your status with 24 hours after it has been received.  You can see the progress in three stages that include return received, refund approved and refund sent.