If you are among the Americans who have already filed taxes this season, you can expect to get your refund about three weeks from the date you submitted your return, according to a recent report issued by the Internal Revenue Service.
A lot of people are concerned that, thanks to the recent government shutdown, which was the third-longest in U.S. history, as well as the ripple effects from tax reform, refunds could be delayed.
But that's not necessarily true.
In their report, the IRS says that despite the shutdown, officials have worked to "promptly resume normal operations," and that they were "able to open this year's tax-filing season one day earlier than the 2018 tax-filing season." According to IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig, the agency "will be doing everything it can" to have a smooth filing season.
"I am extremely proud of the entire IRS workforce. The dedicated IRS employees have worked tirelessly to implement the biggest tax law changes in 30 years and launch tax season for the nation," he said. "Although we face various near- and longer-term challenges, our employees are committed to doing everything we can to help taxpayers and get refunds out quickly."
It is true that returns aren't being processed at quite the same rate as last year. During this time in 2018, 51 million refunds were received by the IRS and 49 million were processed. That's a difference of about 1.7 million. This year, by comparison, 49 million refunds were received and 47 million have been processed, for a difference of 2.2 million.
Nonetheless, the IRS said, more than nine of 10 refunds are issued in less than 21 days.