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How to Check Your Federal and State Tax Refund Status

tax refund

So, you’ve been a good taxpayer and filed your tax returns by April 15, now comes the wait. After the rush to file your taxes, you’re probably anxious to receive your refund checks (if you are eligible) find out how to track your refunds.

Your Federal Tax Refund Status

The speed at which receive your tax refund will depend on how you filed your federal tax return and how you elected to receive the refund.

Here are a few notes on how the IRS issues refunds:

  • The IRS issues refunds every Friday, so it would be best to check your updated tax refund status late Friday or during the weekend.
  • Refunds in the form of direct deposits are issued one week earlier than paper checks.

Federal Tax Refund Status

You filed... Tax refund status available in... Expect your tax refund (after IRS accepts return)...
Electronically, requested direct deposit 72 hours within 2-3 weeks
Electronically, requested paper check 72 hours within 3-4 weeks
Paper return, requested direct deposit 3-4 weeks within 4-6 weeks
Paper return, requested paper check 3-4 weeks within 6-8 weeks

To check your federal tax refund status, visit the IRS “Where’s My Refund?” tool here. You will need to provide your Social Security Number, filing status, and the exact expected refund amount shown on your tax return. If you’d rather check by phone, call the IRS automated service at 1-(800)-829-4477, which is available toll-free 24 hours a day and 7 days a week.

Your State Tax Refund Status

Each individual state has its own processing times for tax refunds. Generally, state tax refunds should be expected within 30 days after the state tax agency has received your state tax returns.

To check the current status of your state tax refund, you will have to contact the state’s Department of Revenue.

Conduct a simple online search including “your state” and “state tax refund status” and you will be able to find the website for your state’s tax agency to check on your state tax refund. Each state may require you to provide different information which may include your Social Security number, filing status, exact refund amount, and ZIP code.

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