As the calendar turns to September, as Labor Day Weekend looms as the traditional end of summer, you would think that the IRS should be pretty much finished with forms it received months ago at the tax deadline.
Well, you would be thinking wrong.
This isn’t exactly new news as the agency experienced a large backlog during the early days of the pandemic when fewer of its workers were working in their offices. Then they probably started to catch up a little bit at some point, but at the end of the 2021 tax season were still left with over 35 million returns that require manual processing.
There are many reasons for this, and if you want to get a little more into the workings of the agency, you can do so by reading this article.
We have received enough recent inquiries about the state of tax returns, though, that I thought it was worth putting this article out this week to make everyone aware of what is happening.
The first thing to remember in this is that even if you submitted your tax return months ago and it still has not been processed, that does not mean that there is anything wrong with your return. You are just among millions still being handled.
Clearly at that point, though, you want to do something to speed up the process. And many people want to call the IRS to do that.
Well, just as there is a backlog of returns that the agency must process, there is a pretty constant barrage of phone calls they are fielding, too. Wait times on the phone can extend to longer than you want to wait to just find out your return is in that large pile they are still getting to.
This then is an urging for patience if you are still waiting. I know this can be very difficult, especially if you are expecting a refund and have that money earmarked for specific purposes. Unfortunately, we do not have any secret key that can be turned to speed up the process. Unless you have been informed of specific issues with your tax return, it really is just a waiting game at this point.
The agency does appear to be increasing (or is at least planning to increase) its workforce to try to solve some of these waiting issues. So maybe this will not be such an issue in the future. Until then, though, we are sorry that we cannot do much more but wait alongside you.
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To ensure we don't make the folks at the IRS ornery, we inform you that any U.S. federal tax advice contained in this communication (including any attachments) is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or (ii) promoting, marketing, or recommending to another party any transaction or matter addressed herein.