We are getting into the thick of tax season and the IRS has a lot of work to do. Granted, that is just usually the case this time of year but things are looking different for the agency this year. Of course, that is largely due to 2020, which was what it was.
First, the IRS still is working through some tax returns filed last year while starting to get hit with the influx of recent ones. (You can read more about this here.) Second, the next stimulus package is making its way through Congress with the hope still being to have it passed by the middle of this month, leaving the agency looking at the upcoming task of getting out another round of individual payments. (Read more here.)
Putting all this news together sounds worse than it seems. The rollout of previous individual payments in the two prior stimulus bills happened very smoothly on the whole. And as more people file their 2020 taxes, it only means that the IRS has the information needed to get them their money. Also, the returns lingering from last year are not normal, run-of-the-mil ones. Yes, the agency has been slow in areas due to staffing issues during the pandemic, but the things that can be handled quickly and digitally have still been being handled that way.
Overall, if you are e-filing a tax return this season that does not have complications that will require extra agency attention, there currently seems to be no reason to believe that the processing of your return and the receipt of any refund will experience significant delays.
All of these forces, though, are still raising the possibility of an extension to the tax deadline like was implemented last year. There have been requests from many areas to see this happen and there are obviously reasonable arguments being made as to why it is a good idea. For now, though, remember that it is only an idea.
We are already in March, the deadline for filing your taxes remains at April 15, and that means more time has already passed in this year than remains until that mark. Consider this counsel then to not count on extra time that has not been granted. You still have time to be ready for April 15 and the sooner you start to plan making that happen, the more ease you can feel at knowing you’re already prepared.
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