What is the Average Time to Receive your 2012 Tax Refund?

by manager

After filling out your tax return for the 2011 fiscal year, you may be excited to learn that a big check is headed your way. As with any payment, the question of when it will arrive is common among those that will receive a refund. The answer is not so simple and depends on many different factors. If you can’t wait to get your refund, you should start thinking about it before you file and make sure that you use the best methods to get the money in your hands as soon as possible.

The biggest difference in the waiting time for your 2012 tax refund will come down to when and how you file. Obviously, the sooner you file, the quicker you will receive your refund, but there are a few more concerns. If you wait until the deadline, you must realize that many other people are in the same boat and it may take some time for the IRS to process all of these returns. In addition, choosing to use e-file rather than the traditional method of sending the actual paperwork in, you will be rewarded by quicker transmission of the money. The processing time of an electronic filing is up to three weeks while the paper method can take up to two months before it is processed.

How you choose to receive the refund can also play a part in how long it takes the check to arrive. All refund checks come from the National Treasury, so this should be taken into consideration if you wish to have the refund delivered in the form of a check. Living far away can mean that mail times take longer than usual. Another option is to have your refund direct deposited into a bank account. This is done automatically and you will have the option to divide the money into three different accounts, including choosing to buy savings bonds if desired. A total of $5000 in savings bonds can be purchased directly with the refund and will be delivered to your home address.

Many tax professionals offer a service called refund anticipation loans that will deliver your money in the fastest possible way. Instead of waiting for a check, the person that prepares your filing will give you a loan based on the amount of money you will receive. Of course, there is a fee for this service, but it can mean that you get your refund the same day as when you file your taxes. With all of the different ways to receive an IRS refund, you should think ahead before you file and make sure you choose the route that will match when you want to receive the money. If you are curious about the status of your refund, the IRS offers status updates online and by phone that show the progress of the refund and when it is expected to arrive. The agency has also created a application for iPhone and Android phone users that will give the status on a person’s mobile device.


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