The Internal Revenue Service opens its filing window today, and says it hired 5,000 more workers to smooth a process that could mean early birds get their refunds as soon as next month.
- The IRS will begin accepting individual returns on Jan. 23.
- The final deadline was bumped back by three days, to April 18, because of a Washington holiday.
- Taxpayers qualify for an automatic six-month extension if they ask for one by April 18.
Taxpayers who file electronically and choose to receive a refund via direct deposit can expect results in three weeks, assuming no issues crop up. Moreover, because of the Emancipation Day holiday in Washington on Monday, April 17, they'll have until April 18 to send their paperwork, and a check, to the IRS.
Six-month filing extensions haven't changed. Anyone can request an extension by submitting Form 4868 by April 18. It will be automatically granted, so the return will be due Oct. 16. The IRS expects about 168 million individual tax returns to be filed this year.
“We've trained thousands of new employees to answer phones and help people,” Acting IRS Commissioner Doug O’Donnell said in a news release. “While much work remains after several difficult years, we expect people to experience improvements this tax season.”
Tips for Tax Season
Many Americans use a professional to help them file and process their individual tax returns. The IRS also offers a free online filing program to anyone with a gross income of up to $73,000 in 2022.
The agency recommends that filers ensure they aren’t eligible for any tax credits, like the Earned Income Tax Credit or Additional Child Tax Credit, before they begin processing their returns. If they do qualify for either of those credits, they can expect a refund in mid-February at the earliest.
People who live in an area that has been federally declared as hit by a natural disaster, such as areas of California experiencing flooding or parts of Alabama and Georgia impacted by severe storms, have until May 15 to file returns.
Correction—Jan. 23, 2023: A previous version of this article incorrectly stated that tax filing begins early in 2023. The IRS usually begins accepting tax filings in late January.