Tax Refund Time: Tax Season Begins January 24: Few people likely actually look forward to tax season (unless you are getting a tax refund), but those who wish to get it out of the way can file beginning Monday. The Internal Revenue Service announced earlier this month that the 2022 tax season will begin about two weeks earlier than last year.
Tax Refund? You Can File as of Monday
As of January 24, 2022, the tax agency will begin accepting and processing 2021 tax year returns. The extra time is meant to provide the IRS with time to perform programming and testing that is critical to ensuring its systems run smoothly. Updated programming further is meant to help ensure that eligible people can claim the proper amount of the Child Tax Credit after comparing their 2021 advance credits and claim any remaining stimulus money as a Recovery Rebate Credit when they file their 2021 tax return.
“Planning for the nation’s filing season process is a massive undertaking, and IRS teams have been working non-stop these past several months to prepare,” explained IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig.
“The pandemic continues to create challenges, but the IRS reminds people there are important steps they can take to help ensure their tax return and refund don’t face processing delays. Filing electronically with direct deposit and avoiding a paper tax return is more important than ever this year,” Rettig added. “And we urge extra attention to those who received an Economic Impact Payment or an advance Child Tax Credit last year. People should make sure they report the correct amount on their tax return to avoid delays.”
In addition, the IRS has encouraged all tax filers to have all the information they need in hand to make sure they file a complete and accurate return.
“Having an accurate tax return can avoid processing delays, refund delays and later IRS notices,” the agency noted. “This is especially important for people who received advance Child Tax Credit payments or Economic Impact Payments (American Rescue Plan stimulus payments) in 2021; they will need the amounts of these payments when preparing their tax return. The IRS is mailing special letters to recipients, and they can also check amounts received on IRS.gov.”
Stimulus Check, Child Tax Credit, and Tax Refunds
As with last year, there will be individuals filing tax returns who, even though they are not required to file, need to file a 2021 return to claim a Recovery Rebate Credit to receive the tax credit from the 2021 stimulus payments or reconcile advance payments of the Child Tax Credit. Moreover, Americans who don’t normally file also could receive other credits the IRS noted.
For those looking to get a head start can already use the IRS Free File, which opened January 14 when participating providers will accept completed returns and hold them until they can be filed electronically with the IRS. Many commercial tax preparation software companies and tax professionals have also begun accepting and preparing tax returns before January 24 to submit the returns when the IRS systems open.
But do remember, if you are owed a tax refund, you are likely to wait.
Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer who has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers and websites. He regularly writes about military small arms, and is the author of several books on military headgear including A Gallery of Military Headdress, which is available on Amazon.com.