Given ongoing tax return processing delays and additional reviews, many tax filers are getting multiple letters from the IRS, including ones stating that their return (and refund payment) will be further delayed for up to an additional 60 days.
This additional delay notification has been especially frustrating for filers who have been unable to learn when their tax return might be processed or when they can expect to receive their refund.
The following reader comments sums this situation up well:
The first [IRS] letter stated my refund was under review with absolutely no other explanation. Then 2 months later I received a letter stating they needed an additional 60 days. Now the other day I received another letter saying they needed another additional 60 days.
This is so frustrating. I wish they [IRS] would at least offer up more of an explanation. It would make the waiting that much less excruciating…”
Tax filers also continue to see other messages on the IRS WMR site stating that “Return Processing Has Been Delayed Beyond The Normal Timeframe” or “N/A” on their tax transcript filing status.
Why the delay?
While the delay could be simply due to IRS processing backlogs, the more likely reason is that your return got flagged for additional processing due to missing or incorrect information the IRS systems cannot automatically reconcile.
This pushes your return to their “error” department for manual review, which is then subject to the limited availability of their examiners.
Note that, those filing in amended returns in particular, will see these 60 day extension letters as the IRS is legally allowed to request more review time to review these returns, which do require more manual reviews.
You will get an initial IRS notice which will state the additional delay (E.g a letter 2645C) and extra time for the IRS to review and respond (normally 60 days).
If they need something from you they will send a follow-up letter (e.g. CP05 or or 4464C) that will likely provide more details and actions to take. So it’s important you closely monitor and action any correspondence from the IRS.
You may get yet another 2645C letter, which says another 60 days is needed for the IRS to action your tax return. The cycle repeats as the IRS completes processing or request more information.
How to find more details on why your taxes are taking so long?
You should always be on the look out and check for formal IRS letters/notices around why your tax return is facing delays. Also review your return for mistakes and if you have an accountant or tax preparer, talk to them.
While this may not tell you a final refund payment date or specific IRS review dates, it can provide some insight into what is going on with your tax return and where the IRS is with processing based on the transcript codes.
Unfortunately there is not much else to do and even your tax filing provider (e.g TurboTax or H&R block) won’t be able to help you much since they don’t have access to IRS systems and will only see what you see.
You can try calling the IRS, but getting an agent will be a challenge. And even if you do get a live agent, the most likely response will be that your return is processing and to wait for a formal update from the IRS examiners after additional verifications are done.
If it’s been more than 60 days since you heard back from the IRS via an updated notice or paid refund, you should call them at 800-829-1040.