How Long Will it Take To Get Your Tax Refund?

How Long Will it Take to Get My Tax Refund?

Where’s my tax refund?

According to the IRS, they will issue “most refunds in less than 21 days”. The IRS is not going to release a tax refund table like they have in the past. However, as a rough guide, we are presenting our estimate and the 2013 table for reference.

Get a Bigger Refund Next Year

Even though you’ve probably filed your tax return for 2013, keep in mind that if you open up a traditional IRA, you’ll be able to write off up to an additional $5,500 (or more) in revenue every year. IRA accounts can be opened in a variety of ways in a variety of places so if you’re new to the benefits an IRA account can provide, Mint.com and their IRA wizard is a good place to start.

As we’ve noted in previous years, a large percentage of people get a tax refund each year. Somewhere around $2,000 per tax filer. As you can imagine, many people are itching to get this money back from the IRS to put it to use. Better to be back in your hands than let the IRS have it another day, right?

If You e-filed Your Tax Return

So how do you find out when your tax refund check will be mailed, or when your direct deposit will be sent? If you e-file, it’s very easy to find out. You have a couple of tools at your disposal.

First, the IRS’s “where’s my refund?” site or mobile version of this site, the IRS2Go App for iPhone and Android are great places to find out where you refund is. You can also call the Refund Hotline at 800–829–1954. The IRS suggest waiting 72 hours after your return has been e-filed to start checking on the status.

Secondly, you could take a gander at the estimated 20143 IRS e-file refund cycle chart:

Transmitted and Accepted by IRS betweenDirect Deposit SentPaper Check Mailed
January 31 and February 6, 2013Wednesday, February 13, 2013Friday, February 15, 2013
February 9 and February 13, 2013Wednesday, February 20, 2013Friday, February 22, 2013
February 16 and February 20, 2013Wednesday, February 27, 2013Friday, March 1, 2013
February 23 and February 27, 2013Wednesday, March 6, 2013Friday, March 8, 2013
March 1 and March 6, 2013Wednesday, March 13, 2013Friday, March 15, 2013
March 8 and March 13, 2013Wednesday, March 20, 2013Friday, March 22, 2013
March 15 and March 20, 2013Wednesday, March 27, 2013Friday, March 29, 2013
March 22 and March 27, 2013Wednesday, April 3, 2013Friday, April 5, 2013
March 29 and April 3, 2013Wednesday, April 10, 2013Friday, April 12, 2013
April 5 and April 10, 2013Wednesday, April 17, 2013Friday, April 19, 2013
April 12 and April 17, 2013Wednesday, April 24, 2013Friday, April 26, 2013

Keep in mind those numbers are purely estimates and the IRS has NOT released one of these charts for the 2013 filing season and they do not plan to. For more guidance on this you should see their refund guide for tax preparers.  You could also look at the 2013 IRS e-file Refund Cycle Chart and use that as a rough estimate of what to expect for this year. Here’s the first few weeks of the chart:

Transmitted and Accepted by IRS betweenDirect Deposit SentPaper Check Mailed
Jan 13 and Jan 19, 2012Thursday, January 26, 2012Monday, January 30, 2012
Jan 20 and Jan 26, 2012Thursday, February 02, 2012Monday, February 06, 2012
Jan 27 and Feb 02, 2012Thursday, February 09, 2012Monday, February 13, 2012
Feb 03 and Feb 09, 2012Thursday, February 16, 2012Monday, February 20, 2012
Feb 10 and Feb 16, 2012Thursday, February 23, 2012Monday, February 27, 2012
Feb 17 and Feb 23, 2012Thursday, March 01, 2012Monday, March 05, 2012
Feb 24 and Mar 1, 2012Thursday, March 08, 2012Monday, March 12, 2012
Mar 02 and Mar 08, 2012Thursday, March 15, 2012Monday, March 19, 2012
Mar 09 and Mar 15, 2012Thursday, March 22, 2012Monday, March 26, 2012
Mar 16 and Mar 22, 2012Thursday, March 29, 2012Monday, April 02, 2012
Mar 23 and Mar 29, 2012Thursday, April 05, 2012Monday, April 09, 2012
Mar 30 and Apr 5, 2012Thursday, April 12, 2012Monday, April 16, 2012
Apr 06 and Apr 12, 2012Thursday, April 19, 2012Monday, April 23, 2012
Apr 13 and Apr 19, 2012Thursday, April 26, 2012Monday, April 30, 2012

Note that the chart shows when the check or direct deposit will be sent, not necessarily received by you. Keep in mind, this is only for those who have chosen to e-file their return. Also, the IRS disclaims that this isn’t a guarantee that your return will be sent on these dates.

If You Mailed Your Return

If you file your return by mail, expect a longer wait. The IRS hasn’t put together a handy calendar for you. Those days are over. So you’ll have to deal with this generic rule: according to the IRS, if your paper return is complete and accurate, you should receive your return around six weeks from the time they received it. Note that after the three week mark, you should be able to call into the IRS or use the website or app mentioned above and locate the status of your return.

What’s your story? How long did you wait for your refund? Did the IRS seem to follow these dates above in your case?

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Last Edited: March 17, 2014 @ 1:52 pm
About Philip Taylor

Philip Taylor, aka "PT", is a husband and father of two. He created PT Money back in 2007 to share his thoughts on money and to meet others passionate about managing their finances. All the content on this blog is original, and created or edited by PT. Read more about Philip Taylor, and be sure to connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, or view the Philip Taylor+ Google profile.

3448 comments
HakeemJamaalSmithJenkins
HakeemJamaalSmithJenkins

i did my taxes on march 10 2014 i checked the where's my refund site today 6/21/2014 and my check will be mailed by the 6/27/2014 they took half of my return tho

smithaj
smithaj

I filed mines through mail and they said it will b sent on the 11th how long untill i get it

Mirmz77
Mirmz77

I haven't received anything as well. I mailed my return Feb 7th. Six weeks later I called since I did not receive any information. I was told it was sent to collections by accident even though I owed nothing. When they saw this, they said it would take 30 days to fix and I should get notice in mail. I called again and I spoke to an IRS agent on April 17th, 2014 because I received letter stating they couldn't give me any information on my return yet the agent told me it was still being reviewed and it should be between 30 days to 6 weeks before I get my refund. It has been six weeks since April 17th and still no word. IRS2go app states they are unable to give me any information, and where's my refund site changes day to day from "return received and it is processing" to "no information at this time." I am quite frustrated and was looking to use refund money to pay for my daughters h.s tuition, if not I will have to borrow from my retirement. I don't know what to do. When I owed Irs, they were so quick to take the money, and send me a million notices and letters. Yet when it's time for them to give me back my hard earned money, radio silence, no notices/letters and the big run around that they don't know why it's still processing. Is anyone having the same issue?  

Irrate taxpayer
Irrate taxpayer

E-filed on Feb 10th. STILL no federal return! IRS said it was sent to a "quality review dept" and it was never sent back to them. Telling me it'll be AT LEAST 30 days to hear from them about a return. Can I charge the IRS interest? Is there any penalty for them!?!

MelodyEvaPope
MelodyEvaPope

I sent mine in in late March and have not heard a single thing and it's not the end of May. I recently moved, so the address I used is not the same one on my W2 from work. Also when I try to use where's my refund or call the number they can't retrieve any information. I'm just getting used to the fact that I'm not going to get one this year, even though I was really depending on it

gerberbaby
gerberbaby

i file mind feb 4th 2014  and was accepted on Feb. 5th after 21 days they said starting march 3 they will be holding it for 60 days some flags were raise and it could be many reasons may owe more in taxes they said if they need anything they will send a latter still no nothing  me and my husband file together and we claim our son so may 3 of 20124 will be 60days can they hold it after that

maurice29
maurice29

I e-filed my taxes on 2/10/14, they got accepted on the same day, and been processing every since, haven't gotten approved r nothing, do anyone know why?

cqwalker
cqwalker

WOW!!!!! That is a long time. But it sounds like you paper filed which can take 6 weeks until its even processed. I E-File and I usually have a date in a few days no longer than a week. I e-filed and had a check mailed to me and the whole process check in hand took like 15 days people that e-file and get direct deposit have received their refund in like 8 days for some each case is different. It's now June and you mailed in March that sounds a little long. All I can comment on is my experience on how long it took. In your case I would call and try to get an actual human on the line to look into the case. Sorry hope it works out for you, these things usually do I know it sucks good luck  TheCqw

eleanoe
eleanoe

I FILED AND MAILED ON 3/5/13 IT IS SAYING STILL BEING PROCESSED! WHEN WILL I GET A DATE? THANK YOU RESPECTFULLY!!!!.....WORRIED

PissedTaxpayer
PissedTaxpayer

The numbers on these tables are pure myth.  I filed in mid Feb and still don't know when I will get my refund.  Funny how they expect us to do the paperwork on their theft of our income and then put off paying overcharges for as long as they want. 

traceyleep
traceyleep

UPDATE: July 11, still no word from IRS, website wheres my refund still says Being Processed.  I am in Florida and have an ordinary return nothing fancy, however a large refund due. Filed end of Feb /early March.

TITANIC
TITANIC

I am in ATLANTA. E-Filed my return in the last week of April. Still NO sign of refund. The website still says 6weeks. Whom do I contact to get my money asap ?

traceyleep
traceyleep

I posted on May 26 (below) still no refund, still says "being processed" it's June 18.

traceyleep
traceyleep

Filed in March, efile, direct deposit. Gotmyrefund first said April 26. Now all it says is "being processed." Have not recieved any other communication from IRS. Its May 26. No refund yet.

Ripped Off
Ripped Off

My return was accepted on March 8 and, till this year, never took more than 7 to 10 days for my direct deposit.  It is now more than 8 weeks and nothing.  The website still says "within six weeks"  What a crock.  I am increasing my dependents to make my refund zero or as close as possible.

Madaboutit
Madaboutit

Sorry that date is wrong I mean may 15th what the hell is going on ......

Madaboutit
Madaboutit

SamethiNg here my brother filed same day as me and received his but mine, say it being processes and I should receive by April 15:( after my date changed three different time anyone else out there this is happening to

Jenn8873
Jenn8873

I too filed and was accepted on Feb 4th and had a deposit date of Mar 6th.    Then that day came and went with nothing being deposited.  Then received a letter. the same one everyone else has telling them to wait 45 days before you contact them and you need not send them anything.  It's now April 13th and it's really getting frustrating.  You call and they give you no answers.  May 2nd will be 45 days from the date of the letter hopefully something will happen before then?!

Dottie
Dottie

That site is IGOTMYREFUND.COM-sorry for the typo

Dottie
Dottie

Once your delayed you just don't know. I filed 03-10 and received a review letter saying they need nothing further. If you go to IGITMYREFUND.COM you'll see there are all kinds of people still waitiing since January. Does the Irs web say you have a processing delay because thats the first sign that your looking at weeks of delays.

DN
DN

I mailed in my tax return and received a date to get my refund of March 27, 2012... that day came and went and the day after my WMR status changed to - your return has been received and is being processed". I am curious if any of you have had this happen and what happens now???? THANKS

 

Rim
Rim

Ughhhhh. My employer didnt take enough out again this year so it looks like that big refund I was hoping for will turn into a little one.

Eddie
Eddie

Widowed in November.  efiled and accepted March 8.  Today is April 2.  Nothing yet.

v86
v86

e-filed also on 3/16 direct deposit nothing here also

kaine23
kaine23

E-filed on 3/17. Direct deposit supposed to arrive today 3/29. Nothing.

Dottie
Dottie

any updates for anyone that received a review letter just stating they are going to do a thorough review but need nothing more.

amanda23glass
amanda23glass

 

the wmr site is now saying due to processing delays i should recieve my refund by april 10 whats going on i havent recieved a letter or anything but its been over a month since i filed

Dottie
Dottie

I am no longer going to efile. When you send a paper return you send all the w2s, 109, etc. that show your being honest. So many of these reviews are being done just because they don't have the original documents. I just received a letter for a review for up to 60 days. There is sbsolutely nothing on that return that they can't look  into their own computor system and verify. For now on I will send a paper return with all the paperwork attached because those people are getting their refunds. IRS has now given me a tax advocate because I am need of this money for medical purposes. We'll see how that goes. Really disappointed in our government.

PennyBault
PennyBault

I filed in early february with an injured spouse form. When I checked the wmr site it said march 13 then on the 13 changed to march 20 on march 20 it changed to processing and received with no other information can anyone tell me how much longer i should have to wait. about to lose my phone and lights and internet which i use to go to college online so stressing this really bad.

Shannell
Shannell

Does anyone know how long does it take for the state tax refund to come, if you mailed in your tax return. I live in kansas! It

rubyreddawgy
rubyreddawgy

efiled my taxes on feb. 14. two weeks later it was bounced back because of a wrong birth date of one of my foster kids. Our tax preparer re sent it on march 1. 

wheres my refund stil says no information avaliable please check you ss number ect, Everything is right. Why is it not acknowledging even receiving it. 

amanda23glass
amanda23glass

 

dam this is not makin any sence i went to the wmr site to see what the process of my return was an it now says we have recieved your return an it is bein processed thats it no should recieve by nothing but yesterday it said should recieve by the 20 which is today i filed on 2/27 an got accpected the same day. i dont know what it means? with no date does that mean im gettin aduited? will i get my money first then will i get aduited ? someone please help

cqwalker
cqwalker

Praise be to GOD in the most high. I recieved my check today 3/19/12.It was mailed from Philadelpha,PN. I live in Chicago, IL. It was mailed Friday 3/16/12 And I received it today Monday 3/19/12 @ 4:30 pm (CST).Not bad.I e-filed 3/6/12 and was accepted same day 3/6/12 no direct deposit paper check mailed.

cqwalker
cqwalker

this site has been pretty quiet, I'm assuming that people who were waiting perhaps recieved their money and ran off without posting an update. Chelsea323,Britttbrattt,amanda23glass,Rob1,whats up? When I get my check I will post so others with questions may have a referance according to my post along with others who have followed thru.

cqwalker
cqwalker

I filed and was accepted on 3/6/12 I have a paper check being mailed to me the date I was given for the check to be mailed was 3/16/12 my date never changed. Today 3/17/12 I checked my status on the IRS web site and it now says that my check was mailed on 3/16/12 so the check is in the mail.Some people have different circumstances which is why it might take longer for some people to get their tax refund than others.God willing my return had no issues and I'M getting my refund on time right on time. I know everybody needs their money it will come I know it sucks waiting and not knowing where it is and its easy for me to say be patient and all that stuff because my money is comming.But for those that don't know I've been there and I know your frustation all I can offer are words of hope be thankful your getting a refund cause many aren't.

RebeccaJaymi
RebeccaJaymi

Really confused. My mom and I filed on same day, her refund came thru last week, I'm STILL waiting on mine...don't know how I'm going to make it the next week let alone if I have to wait til April now like most I've seen comment :(

chelsea323
chelsea323

got news just galled the tax advocate hot line and the lady said that i have a dd date for 3/21 if i dont have it by then call i.r.s. if you have face book find this group 2011 tax refund delays (5405form,1301 or 1481 Error codes..there is about 8000 people have our problems and they r all giving help as much as possible ..i will come back and let you know if i got it but go on fb if you can a lot of great advice and you can vent ...lol good luck to us all...

britttbrattt
britttbrattt

i filed on 02/27 and the wmr site is saying it was direct deposited on 03/14. no money omg im going crazy anyone else with this problem?

HakeemJamaalSmithJenkins
HakeemJamaalSmithJenkins

i filed mine through the mail h and r block messed up so i had to do some things on my own ...............pikachu

daynaaja
daynaaja

Mine was sent out on the 13th too And havent received it .. have you?

maurice29
maurice29

@cqwalker, i e-filed it cause i paid for it with my credit card, and they have an irs refund cycle chart that said i were to get it by tomorrow. But due to the government shut down, they r a week behind. So i will get next friday according to the chart

Dottie
Dottie

 @amanda23glass

 Same happened to me first and then yesterday I received a letter saying that they were go to review my return and not to call for 60 days. My return was accepted 03-10. They gave four reasons why I could have been selected and none apply to me. All the information I have on my return that they listed they can check in their own system. Its' nonsense. They are using excuses so they won't have to pay us until they get paid by people that owe them. In my letter they didn't ask for any additional items just for me to wait.

Vain1
Vain1

 @PennyBault same thing here...in total your looking at a wait of 8-11 weeks until you recieve your refund. IRS processing for injured spouse...its on the IRS website and i called and confirmed...i file jan 23 and accepted the 24th...its now 4/4/12 and wheres my refund just updated my date to be mailed out on 4/6.

 

amanda23glass
amanda23glass

 

because of the mistake it may take a little longer hold tight your money will get to u soon

cqwalker
cqwalker

 @amanda23glass

 I don't think your getting an audit.......Unless perhaps you have been giving the I.R.S. fraudulent information and they caught on to you but only you know the answer to that, and I don't want to know.I'm not saying you are I'm just throwing ideas out there.If in fact you are getting an audit you will not recieve any funds until the audit is complete and a refund amount is established.I'm not trying to scare you but I heard an audit is alot of stuff that usually involves you hiring a tax lawyer and the audit can go back into your finances several years not just this year. 

chelsea323
chelsea323

 @britttbrattt call your bank to see if they recieved anything if not call1 877 777 4778 and ask for advocate  they will ask you if you have hardship such shutoff notice late payments and they can see what irs see and they can let you know also..tell them you have hardship and cut off will be 3/21......

 

Babiegirl
Babiegirl

@britttbrattt depends on your bank took me 48hrs...

Dottie
Dottie

 @cqwalker  @amanda23glass

 You do not have to do anyting wrong to be audited. My return is to the penny with absolutely nothing that I can't verify as true. And because of the audit they have my refund on hold so you also do not get any of your refund money until they are done.