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IRS “Where’s My Refund?” Tool

The IRS is aware that some people are experiencing delays when using the "Where’s My Refund?" Tool to check the status of their tax refund.

These tips can make it easier for you to get an accurate update.

From the IRS:


The IRS alerted taxpayers and the tax community it is experiencing high traffic on Where’s My Refund as more tax returns come in. The heavy volume of refund inquiries means that the IRS anticipates both “Where’s My Refund?” on and the refund feature on the IRS2go phone app will have limited availability during busier periods.

Due to the large number of inquiries and to avoid service disruptions, the IRS strongly urges taxpayers to only check on their refunds once a day. IRS systems are only updated once a day, usually overnight, and the same information is available whether on the internet, IRS2go smartphone app or on IRS toll-free lines. While “Where’s My Refund” is updated nightly, your account will not change that frequently.

The IRS is seeing a good start to the filing season, and tax refunds are being issued timely. Nine out of 10 taxpayers typically receive refunds in less than 21 days when they use e-file with direct deposit.

The IRS expects to see the number of tax returns — and related refund inquiries —steadily increase around the President’s Day holiday week.

Here are some tips to help taxpayers with their refund questions:

  • Have the right tax information ready before using any of the IRS refund tools. This includes Social Security number, filing status and refund amount.
  • You don’t need to check Where’s My Refund more than once a day as your information will not change.
  • To avoid system delays, the best time to check on refunds is evening and weekends.
  • There is no need to call the IRS about your refund; the telephone service has the same information that is available on Where’s My Refund.

Learn more about Where’s My Refund and how to check the status of your refund.

Around tax time there may be an increase in phishing attacks from people posing as the IRS trying to get your personal information. 

As a reminder, the IRS will never contact you by email or any social media site to ask for your personal information.

Tax Tips: When Will I Get My Refund

Video description

Find out what could possibly delay your tax refund

Video transcript

Hi I’m Theresa and I work for the Internal Revenue Service.

As soon as you hit send on your tax return, are you asking, “When will I get my refund?”

Well we do need a little bit of time here at the IRS to process your return.

Chances are if you e-filed and selected direct deposit, we could send you your refund in as few as 10 days.

If not, then most likely within 21 days.

More than nine times out of 10, tax payers are issued their refund in 21 days.

So odds are high your refund will be there soon.

So there’s no need to call. If we need more information to process your return, we’ll contact you by mail.

Something to kepe in mind though, the IRS does not initiate contact with taxpayers by email to ask for personal or financial information.

Now if you’re triyng to figure out the exact day you’re going to get your refund, the best way to do that is to go to our website and use the “Where’s my Refund” tool or if you have a smartphone, you can ue the IRS2Go app to check on your refund.

Asked by Anonymous

I received an email the other day that I believe is a scam using the IRS as the sender. Where can forward this to have it checked out?

The IRS has recently issued warnings about phony e-mails that are trying to steal your personal information. 

If you receive an e-mail that claims to be from the IRS and asks for your personal information, follow these steps:

  • Do not reply.
  • Do not open any attachments. Attachments may contain malicious code that will infect your computer.
  • Do not click on any links. If you clicked on a links and entered confidential information, visit the IRS identity protection page.
  • Forward the email to
  • After you forward it, delete the original email message.

Learn more about how to report suspicious e-mails or phishing schemes to the IRS.

Four Easy Ways to e-File Your Taxes

Last year, nearly 100 million taxpayers e-filed their federal income taxes with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). It’s the safest, fastest, and easiest way to submit your tax return.

If you e-file, you can expect to get your refund in half the time. If you owe money, you have more payment options.

There are four ways to e-file your federal income taxes:

  • Free File - if your income was $57,000 or less, you can use Free File for free tax preparation and e-filing.
  • Free File Fillable Forms - regardless of income, you can use online Fillable Forms. Fillable Forms are an electronic version of the IRS paper forms. This is a good option if you are comfortable preparing your own tax return, but want the advantages of fast, secure, and free e-filing.
  • Commercial Tax Software - you can buy your own tax preparation software, prepare your own return, and press send to e-file.
  • Tax Preparer - Find a tax professional you trust to prepare and e-file your return. Nearly all tax preparers use e-file now and many are now required by law to e-file.

Learn more about e-filing your taxes, and how to pick the method best for you