How to Check the Status of Your Tax Return & Get Transcripts

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No news is good news

With the IRS, no news is good news. By default, the IRS will not contact you with the status of your return, unless you specifically request it.

The below information will show you how you can find the status of your return and/or get a transcript.

Ordering A Transcript

You may download a copy of your IRS tax transcript.

Ordering tax transcript from the IRS does not mean you will get their refund faster. IRS tax transcripts are most commonly used to validate income and tax filing statuses for mortgages, student and small business loan applications, and to help with tax preparation.

There are different kinds of transcripts --- all of which are obtained via --- the following types of transcripts can be obtained.

  • Return Transcript, which includes most of the line items of a tax return as filed with the IRS. A tax return transcript does not reflect changes made to the account after the return is processed. Transcripts are only available for the following returns: Form 1040 series, Form 1065, Form 1120, Form 1120-A, Form 1120-H, Form 1120-L, and Form 1120S. Return transcripts are available for the current year and returns processed during the prior 3 processing years. Most requests will be processed within 10 business days 
  • Account Transcript, which contains information on the financial status of the account, such as payments made on the account, penalty assessments, and adjustments made by you or the IRS after the return was filed. Return information is limited to items such as tax liability and estimated tax payments. Account transcripts are available for most returns. Most requests will be processed within 10 business days
  • Record of Account, which provides the most detailed information as it is a combination of the Return Transcript and the Account Transcript. Available for current year and 3 prior tax years. Most requests will be processed within 10 business days 
  • Verification of Nonfiling, which is proof from the IRS that you did not file a return for the year. Current year requests are only available after June 15th. There are no availability restrictions on prior year requests. Most requests will be processed within 10 business days 
  • Form W-2, Form 1099 series, Form 1098 series, or Form 5498 series transcript. The IRS can provide a transcript that includes data from these information returns. State or local information is not included with the Form W-2 information. The IRS may be able to provide this transcript information for up to 10 years. Information for the current year is generally not available until the year after it is filed with the IRS. For example, W-2 information for 2011, filed in 2012, will likely not be available from the IRS until 2013. If you need W-2 information for retirement purposes, you should contact the Social Security Administration at 1-800-772-1213. Most requests will be processed within 10 business days

Calling the IRS

Another option for checking on the status of your return is calling the dedicated IRS line for International Taxpayers at  267-941-1099.

Refund Process

After your return is e-filed, it goes through the following four statuses at the IRS:

  • Return is e-filed, acceptance pending
  • Return is accepted
  • Refund (if one is requested) is approved --- see below for checking the status of your refund.
  • Refund (if approved) is sent/deposited

To check the status of your refund online:

  1. Browse to the IRS Website, then click Check My Refund Status.
  2. Enter your Social Security number or ITIN, select your filing status, and then type your exact refund amount as shown on your tax return.
  3. Click Submit.

The status of your state return can be checked on the website of your state tax department.

You can also check the status of amended tax returns.

Acceptance Pending

Acceptance pending means that your return has not been processed yet. Generally, it takes 24-48 hours for the IRS to accept the return. However, if the return was e-filed in January, it’s status may be listed as pending for several days or even longer (until the IRS manages to process the backlog of returns).

Return is Accepted

When the status of your return changes to accepted, it means that your return has been verified by the IRS (the Social Security numbers are correct, your dependents haven't already been claimed, etc.), and the government is ready to proceed with the refund.

If TFX e-filed your return, you’ll receive confirmation that it has been accepted within 2 days. Once we receive the confirmation notice from the IRS, we’ll upload it to your Client Area. To view the confirmation notice, browse to Documents > Filing Instructions and Confirmations, and then click Preview. You may also download files to your computer by clicking on the name of the file.

If you sent your return by mail, it will usually be accepted by IRS within four weeks of sending.

Once your return had been accepted, you may track your federal and/or state returns. Please note that until your return is accepted you may get a "No record found" error message when searching for it. Check back in a day or two after your return has been accepted and it should be available.

Refund is Approved

If you expect to receive a refund, it normally takes around three weeks for the IRS to process the return once it’s accepted.

Once your return has been accepted, you may track the status of your refund on the IRS website.

After your return is accepted by the IRS, you may track your refund on the IRS Website. Refund information is updated just once a day, generally overnight, so there’s no need to check more often than once a day.

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