Skip to Main Content

Hey, IRS! Where’s My Refund?

Still waiting on your refunds from the IRS for your 2020 tax return? You’re not alone. Due to the pandemic, the IRS remains in a severe backlog as they continue to process this year’s returns for millions of American individuals and businesses.

What’s the Hold Up?

At the conclusion of this year’s filing season, the IRS was roughly 35 million returns behind schedule, most which have still not made it through manual processing. Of these returns, the National Taxpayer Advocate states that “The backlog includes about 16.8 million paper tax returns waiting to be processed; about 15.8 million returns suspended during processing that require further review; and about 2.7 million amended returns awaiting processing.”

What Can You Do?

Unfortunately, both taxpayers and preparers have their hands tied on the matter and there isn’t much else to do but wait.

While there isn’t anymore action required by taxpayers once they’ve filed, you can can check on the status of your return either online or over the phone to get an idea of your refund timeline.

Checking Your Return Status


The easiest way to check your return status is by using the IRS’ “Where’s My Refund?” tool. The site will ask for your Social Security Number, filing status, and refund amount before providing you with three key indicators to help track your return status:

  • Received: The IRS has your tax return and is currently working to process it
  • Approved: The IRS has processed your return and confirmed the amount of your refund owed
  • Sent: Your refund is currently on its way, either by check or through direct deposit


Taxpayers may also wish to call the agency to speak directly with an IRS agent, but this option is typically tedious and often ineffective. The National Taxpayer Advocate reported that the IRS had, “Only seven percent of taxpayer calls reaching a telephone assistor” and that for the individual return line “Taxpayers placed about 85 million calls, and only three percent reached a telephone assistor.”

In Summary

The past year has been hectic for us all and the IRS is no exception. The agency has fallen behind on return processing in the past, but never to this extent.

Concerned about your refund? Speak with your trusted accountant at 516-541-6549 and visit our website to stay informed on all tax news.

This entry was posted in News & Articles. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.