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Tax Refund Information Tax Refund Guide

Tax Refund Information IRS Topic 152

Taxpayers have two options for receiving their individual federal income tax refunds: a paper check or a direct deposit (electronic funds transfer) into a checking or savings account.

Beginning with the 2006 tax year, taxpayers may request that refunds be directly deposited into up to three separate accounts. This ability to split or allocate direct deposit refunds among multiple accounts will be available to taxpayers filing individual tax returns.

The refund amount must be $1.00 or more. Form 8888, Direct Deposit of Refund to More Than One Account, will give taxpayers a choice of selecting one, two or three accounts such as checking, savings and retirement account.

Taxpayers filing Form 8379, Injured Spouse Allocation, do not have the option to split their refunds. If you file a complete accurate tax return, your refund will be issued within six weeks from the received date. If you filed electronically, refund checks are generally issued within three weeks after the acknowledgment date.

Refunds from amended returns are generally issued within 8–12 weeks. Injured spouse claims can take longer, depending on the circumstances.

Refer to Topic 203 for more information concerning Injured Spouse Claims. To check on your refund, go to "Where's My Refund" or call the Refund Hotline at (800) 829-1954. Please allow 4 weeks after you mail your return before calling this automated system.

When you call, you will need to provide your Social Security number, your filing status, and the exact whole dollar amount of the refund shown on your return.

There are several reasons for delayed refunds. Refer to Topic 303 for a checklist of common errors when preparing your tax return, and for additional items that may delay the processing of your return.

If you receive a refund to which you are not entitled, or one for an amount that is more than you expected, do not cash the check until you receive a notice explaining the difference.

Follow the instructions on the notice. On the other hand, if you receive a refund for a smaller amount than you expected, you may cash the check, and, if it is determined that you should have received more, you will later receive a check for the difference.

If you did not receive a notice and you have questions about the amount of your refund, wait two weeks after receiving the refund, then call 1-800-829-1040. The IRS assists taxpayers in obtaining replacement checks for refunds that are verified as lost or stolen.