IRS E-File Tax Refund Schedule for 2017

Tax Refund Schedule 2017

Tax season is here. While many taxpayers like to wait until the last minute to file their tax returns, there are also benefits to filing your taxes early. In this article, we are going to take a look at the IRS tax refund schedule for 2017 and some of the frequently asked questions on getting your tax returns.

The most obvious benefit to filing your taxes early is that you could get your refund sooner. Everything else equal, the earlier the IRS receives your filing, the sooner it could send you the returns. You can check the IRS tax refund schedule table below to see when you can expect to get your refund. However, note that there could be delays, which will be discussed later in this article.

Other than getting the refund faster, filing your taxes early also gives you more time to learn about the new rules. While we all want to press the snooze button, starting right before the deadline can be a hassle, especially if there’s any change for the new tax season.

Of course, that doesn’t mean you should rush through your filing as quickly as possible. After all, it’s better to get everything right the first time. Having inaccurate or incomplete information on your tax filing could turn out to be a very costly experience.

If you are filing taxes early, one thing to watch out for is having the latest W-2 and 1099-S forms. The W-2 is a federal tax form issued by employers, while the 1099-S is for non-employee compensation, such as dividends and rent. While the deadline for 1099-S issuers was February 2 this year, many taxpayers get their 1099S- forms in the mail in late February.

E-Filing Tax Refund Payment Schedule 2017

One way to speed up the process of getting your refund is to file your taxes electronically. The IRS offers an easy-to-use, free file software for those who earned less than $64,000 in 2016. For taxpayers with income above $64,000, the IRS offers a set of free file fillable forms. The fillable forms offer less guidance than the software and are for those who know how to do their taxes themselves. (Source: “E-File Options for Individuals,” Internal Revenue Service, last accessed February 3, 2017.)

Individual taxpayers may also use commercial tax prep software to file their taxes. And of course, there is always the option of finding a professional to help you file your taxes. The IRS provides a list of authorized IRS E-File providers that you can search based on your area. (Source: “Authorized IRS e-file Providers for Individuals,” Internal Revenue Service, December 29, 2016.)

By using e-filing, your filing will get to the IRS instantly and you will receive a confirmation. Other than saving the time spent on the mailing process, e-filing also doesn’t require an IRS employee to manually enter the numbers on paper tax filings into the system.

Signing up for direct deposits could help you get your refund faster as well. This allows the IRS to deposit your tax refund directly into your financial account; there’s no need to wait for that check to arrive in the mail. According to the IRS, eight out of 10 taxpayers are now getting their refunds through direct deposit. (Source: “Direct Deposit Your Refund,” Internal Revenue Service, last accessed February 3, 2017.)

Before we look at the tax return dates, keep in mind that the last date to file your tax return is April 18, 2017.

The table below shows the expected date by which your tax refund is directly deposited to your bank account, or the expected date by which the return is mailed out to you. I have also included the federal holidays that may cause a delay in the process.

E-Filing Cycle Dates

Tax ReturnAccepted by IRS BetweenDirect Deposit DateHolidays That May Cause Delays

January 23 and 28 February 3 February 6 N/A
January 29 and February 04 February 10 February 13 N/A
February 05 11 February 17 February 21 President’s Day, February 20
February 12 and 18 February 24 February 27 President’s Day, February 20
February 19 and 25 March 3 March 6 President’s Day, February 20
February 26 and March 04 March 10 March 13 N/A
March 05 and 11 March 17 March 20 N/A
March 12 and 18 March 24 March 27 N/A
March 19 and 25 March 31 April 3 N/A
March 26 and April 01 April 7 April 10 N/A
April 02 and 08 April 14 April 17 N/A
April 09 and 15 April 21 April 24 N/A
April 16 and 22 April 28 May 1 N/A
Apr 23 and 29 May 5 May 8 N/A
April 30 and May 06 May 12 May 15 N/A
May 07 and 13 May 19 May 22 N/A
May 14 and 20 May 26 May 30 Memorial Day, May 29
May 21 and 27 June 2 June 5 Memorial Day, May 29
May 28 and June 03 June 9 June 12 Memorial Day, May 29
June 04 and 10 June 16 June 19 N/A
June 11 and 17 June 23 June 26 N/A
June 18 and 24 June 30 July 3 N/A
June 25 and July 01 July 7 July 10 Independence Day, July 4
July 02 and 08 July 14 July 17 Independence Day, July 4
July 09 and 15 July 21 July 24 N/A
Jul 16 and 22 July 28 July 31 N/A
July 23 and 29 August 4 August 7 N/A
July 30 and August 05 August 11 August 14 N/A
August 06 and 12 August 18 August 21 N/A
August 13 and 19 August 25 August 28 N/A
August 20 and 26 September 1 September 5 Labor Day, September 4
August 27 and September 02 September 8 September 11 Labor Day, September 4
September 03 and 09 September 15 September 18 Labor Day, September 4
September 10 and 16 September 22 September 25 N/A
September 17 and 23 September 29 October 2 N/A
September 24 and 30 October 6 October 10 N/A
October 01 and 07 October 13 October 16 Columbus Day, October 9
October 08 and 14 October 20 October 23 Columbus Day, October 9

How Long Does It Take to Receive My Tax Refund?

According to the IRS, more than 90% of refunds are issued in less than 21 days from the day the tax return is accepted by the IRS. If you are using E-File to file your taxes, you will receive a confirmation that your tax return is accepted by the IRS after you submit the filing. If you choose to file paper tax returns, then you should also factor in the time between you sending the filing out and the IRS accepting it. There could be delays with the mailing service and numbers on your paper tax return need to be entered into the system manually by IRS employees. In other words, those that file paper tax returns should expect longer times before receiving their tax refund.

Tax Refund Delays

Is there anything that could cause tax refund delays in 2017?

As was the case with previous years, delays in the mailing service or at the bank could make it take longer for people to receive their tax refunds. Holidays should also be taken into account.

But here is also something that’s unique to 2017. Basically, if you have filed your tax return and claimed the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) or the Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC), you might have to wait a bit longer for the refund check.

This is due to the passing of the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes (PATH) Act of 2015 over a year ago. Under section 201 of the new law, the IRS must wait until February 15, 2017 to issue refunds to those that claimed the Earned Income Tax Credit or the Additional Child Tax Credit. And because the IRS is not allowed to release the part of the refund that is not associated with the EITC and ACTC, the IRS would hold the entire refund of those affected by the new law.

Moreover, if you claimed the EITC or ACTC, don’t expect the IRS to release your refund on the day of February 15. Rather, you should expect some processing time at the banks and the impact of President’s Day weekend. The IRS said that delayed refunds may not arrive in bank accounts until the week of February 27. (Source: “IRS Says to Expect Delays for Tax Refunds,” The Wall Street Journal, January 5, 2017.)

Here’s an interesting fact: because the delay could cause tens of billions of dollars to arrive in people’s bank accounts several weeks later than usual, it could affect Super Bowl TV purchases. Last year, U.S. TV sales in the two weeks before and after the Super Bowl totaled $395.0 million. This year, things could be different. Retailers Wal-Mart Stores Inc (NYSE:WMT) and hhgregg, Inc. (NYSE:HGG) have delayed refund-related marketing due to the IRS tax refund delays. Chris Sutton, hhgregg’s senior vice president of marketing, said that, “tax season is an integral time period for sales of appliance, furniture, and TVs.” (Source: “Tax-Refund Delay Threatens Super-Bowl TV Purchases,” The Wall Street Journal, February 3, 2017.)

For those that are wondering “where’s my refund?” the IRS has a refund status page. You can check the status of your refund within 24 hours after the IRS receives your e-filed tax return or four weeks after mailing your paper return. You can see your refund date after the IRS has processed your tax return and approved your refund. Note that the page is updated no more than once every 24 hours, usually overnight. (Source: “Refund Status,” Internal Revenue Service, last accessed February 6, 2017.)

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