Whether you’ve already filed or are putting it off until the Tuesday, April 18th filing deadline, you might be most interested in when you’ll receive a tax refund.
To help you navigate the 2023 tax filing season, WebCE has compiled a list of this year’s new tax filing changes in addition to updated filing deadlines, a tax refund schedule, and tips on how to get your tax refund as fast as possible.
When you or your clients receive a tax refund depends on how the tax return was filed and how the taxpayer chose to receive the refund: electronically or by mail?
The IRS recommends filing electronically and selecting direct deposit to receive your tax refund as fast as possible—typically in two weeks, and sometimes as fast as ten days. In fact, if your adjusted gross income (AGI) is less than $73,000, you can file for free using the IRS Free File Program.
Filing by mail can increase the time spent waiting for your tax refund by up to two months. See the tax refund charts below for a complete breakdown.
The tax refund schedule chart and calendar below rely on guidance issued by the IRS and historical trends. Both have been updated for the 2023 tax season.
2023 IRS Tax Refund Schedule Chart
When you or your clients receive a tax refund depends on how the tax return was filed (electronically or by mail) and how the taxpayer chose to receive the refund (direct deposit or check by mail).
The tax refund schedule chart below lists estimated delivery times based on filing and refund types:
|Tax Refund Delivery Type||Tax Refund Delivery Time|
|E-file and direct deposit||1–3 weeks (usually 2 weeks)|
|Paper file by mail and direct deposit||3 weeks|
|E-file and tax refund check by mail||6–8 weeks|
|Paper file by mail and tax refund check by mail||6–8 weeks|
2023 IRS Refund Payment Calendar
Over 90% of tax refunds are issued in less than 21 days after tax returns are processed. The tax refund payment calendar details when you or your clients should receive a federal tax refund based on opting for direct deposit or paper check. See exceptions below.
The IRS will begin accepting tax returns on January 24, 2022.
Date Return Filed
Date Direct Deposit Sent
Date Paper Check Mailed
January 31, 2022
February 11, 2022
February 18, 2022
1 During peak tax filing season (Mid-March through April), it may take slightly longer for the IRS to process tax returns. The IRS still plans to send most tax refunds within three weeks of processing the tax return.
How to Track Your 2023 IRS Tax Refund
The IRS provides two free tools for taxpayers to track the status of their 2023 tax refund:
- The Where’s My Refund? tool, available on the IRS website
- The IRS2Go mobile app, available for iOS and Android devices
If submitted electronically, a tax return’s status should be available using these tools within 24 hours. Those that file by mail may have to wait up to four weeks for an update.
To check the status of your tax refund using either of these tools, you will need:
- Social Security number OR Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN)
- Your filing status (for example, married, single, or head of household)
- The exact amount of your tax refund in whole dollars (as found on your tax return)
How to Get Your 2023 Tax Refund from the IRS as Fast as Possible
Filing electronically and selecting direct deposit is the best way to get your tax refund as soon as possible because it reduces processing time and expedites delivery.
Request Direct Deposit for Your Tax Refund
You will receive your 2023 tax refund much faster if you choose electronic direct deposit instead of requesting a check in the mail. (See our tax refund schedule above.) Nine out of ten taxpayers that select direct deposit will receive their tax refund in less than 21 days. Plus, the IRS allows for direct deposits across up to three bank accounts.
Double Check Your Tax Return Information for Accuracy
File your taxes accurately for a fast refund. Having an error on a tax return is the most common cause of a delayed filing or tax refund. Always double check—then triple check—all information on your tax return for accuracy before filing to avoid any speedbumps.
Here are some questions to consider when filing a 2023 tax return:
- Did you review the identifying numbers (SSN or ITIN) for yourself, your spouse, and your dependents?
- Is the information for your dependents correct?
- Did you Check to make sure your routing and account number are accurate for direct deposit?
- Did you electronically sign your tax return?
- Have you confirmed all the information on your tax return is accurate?
Addressing these issues—and ensuring all information on your tax return is correct—is one of the best things you can do to ensure a fast tax refund.
If you need to make changes to your tax return after you have already filed, you will need to file an amended return called Form 1040-X, Amended U.S. Individual Income Tax Return.
What's New to Consider When You File Your Taxes in 2023?
This year brings a number of changes to consider when filing your taxes, including the Inflation Reduction Act, which will have major impacts on tax credits, subsidies, income reporting, and more. Knowing the latest changes and how they impact your tax return, if at all, is vital to successfully filing your tax return and getting your tax refund fast.
These recent changes may make filing your taxes more complicated than previous years. Maybe it’s time to turn to a tax professional or tax software for assistance?
Finding a tax professional sooner rather than later is important this year because they will only get busier as the April 18, 2023, deadline to file approaches. The chaos of the previous pandemic years has also changed the tax profession landscape. Many experienced tax professionals retired, decided to downsize, or are no longer accepting clients. New practices have opened to fill the gap, but this shifting landscape has made finding a qualified, knowledgeable tax professional—or standing out in the competitive tax preparation industry—paramount.
Credentialed Tax Preparers Can Help
In the event your tax filing has become too hard for you to complete on your own, you can get help from a variety of tax professionals. To help taxpayers find a qualified tax return preparer, the IRS has a public directory of certain tax professionals that have specific credentials and qualifications in the Directory of Federal Tax Return Preparers with Credentials and Select Qualifications. Among the tax professionals listed are attorneys, CPAs, enrolled agents, and Annual Filing Season Program Record of Completion recipients.
The IRS established the Annual Filing Season Program to recognize unenrolled tax return preparers who voluntarily complete continuing education. According to the IRS, this program is meant to reward tax professionals aspiring to higher levels of professionalism.
For more complicated tax filings, an enrolled agent, attorney, or CPA may be more appropriate. These tax professionals have unlimited representation rights, meaning they can represent taxpayers in all matters, including audits, collections, and appeals. ASFP holders have limited representation rights. Tax preparers not listed in the IRS directory may be able to help prepare your tax return, but are unable to represent you with the IRS if there are problems after your return is filed.
During this tax season, be mindful of federal filing deadlines, the refund payment schedule, and 2023’s changes to ensure a successful and stress-free tax filing season—and a quick tax refund! After all, the cure for stress during the sometimes hectic tax season is peace of mind.