01Tax Refund Check
The IRS can mail you a refund check, typically within about six weeks of receiving your return. If you e-file, mailing the check takes about three weeks. You can visit the IRS website to track the status of your refund check.
Including mailing and processing time, a paper check is the slowest way to get your refund. There's also a slight chance it could get lost in the mail.
If you opt for direct deposit, you are not alone: eight in 10 taxpayers use e-file and direct deposit to receive their refunds faster. You can receive your refund in as few as 10 days depending on when you file. The IRS can deposit the refund in a checking, savings, or retirement account. You can have your deposit split into different accounts as well.
Like a paper check refund, you can track your direct deposit refund online at the IRS website.
Some businesses offer tax refund anticipation loans. Sometimes called rapid refund or instant refund, you can get the money in just one or two days. The downside is that this speed will cost you: such businesses charge exorbitant fees to process this loan. Steering clear of this option is a wise move.
04Avoid Having a Tax Refund
It can feel good to get a tax refund, especially if you have a plan for how using the money. But a tax refund means that you've overpaid taxes throughout the year, essentially providing the government with a tax-free loan.
Consider the advantages of adjusting your withholdings so that less money is taken out throughout the year. You'll have more money in your pocket each payday.
If you earn a low or moderate income, you may qualify for the earned income credit (EIC), a refundable tax credit that still gives you a tax refund. The amount of the benefit depends on income and number of children.
The IRS Withholding Calculator can help you determine the right withholding amount by asking you to input your income and the number of children you will claim for the Child Tax Credit and Earned Income Tax Credit, as well as other items that affect your taxes.
Tax Refund Options
3 Ways to Get Your Tax Refund From the IRS
If you're planning on getting a tax refund from the IRS, you may be wondering how you can get your money faster. Several options are available to you, from receiving a check to an electronic direct deposit, or even applying for a refund anticipation loan.
But whichever method you choose, you'll speed up the time it takes the IRS to review your return and get your refund faster if you file your tax return electronically (e-file). You can use e-file yourself or a tax preparer can do it for you. The IRS states that it issues more than nine out of 10 e-file refunds in less than 21 days.