Want Faster Tax Refund? IRS Says Ditch Paper Return

Published: Tuesday, January 3, 2017 - 2:34pm
Updated: Tuesday, January 3, 2017 - 2:41pm
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The Internal Revenue Service is preparing for about 150 million individual tax returns to be filed this year, with about 3 million coming from Arizona.

There aren’t a lot of people using paper tax forms anymore. They make up roughly 10 percent of filers. Bill Brunson with the Phoenix IRS office says paper filers make more mistakes. They have an error rate of 13 percent, while the error rate for electronic filers is one-half of 1 percent.

“The software will ask you for items that you may not think about,” he said. “It will ensure that the additions and subtractions are correct. It will assess the correct amount of tax. It’s gonna ask you questions that will deal with credits to see if you qualify or deductions to see if you are able to claim them or other expenses that you may not consider that could be something that would reduce your overall taxable income.”

When it comes to electronic filers, Brunson says the IRS will issue 9 out of 10 refunds in less than three weeks. Paper filers will have to wait four to six weeks for paper checks.

The IRS will officially begin accepting returns on Jan. 23. They are due April 18. 

A new law that took effect Jan. 1 could impact more than 1 million Arizona taxpayers claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit or the Additional Child Tax Credit. The law requires the IRS to hold refunds for those credits until at least mid-February.

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