How long does a tax return take?
Tax returns are big business. Lots of companies offer rapid tax returns to customers and people will usually give up a large portion of their return in order to receive it fast. Others make the choice to do their takes online giving them the ability to either get a check in the mail or get an electronic deposit to their account. All of these processes will take different amounts of time. People that want to know how long does a tax return take should consider all the options. They should also know what is involved in each of the different scenarios that take place. This is the only way that they can really make the best decision for getting their money back.
Lots of people owe taxes so they never really worry about asking how long does a tax return take. They just wait until the last minute to file and hope that they can set up a payment plan with the IRS. On the other end of the spectrum there are people that are waiting for tax season. They are depending on the taxes to buy big ticket items so they usually want the money as fast as they can get it.
This is why lots of companies promote rapid tax refunds. This doesn’t exactly work the way that people believe that it does. When the taxes are filed people give their tax preparers a certain portion of the money that they are guaranteed as a payment. What happens behind the scenes is that the rapid tax company gives their customers checks in a couple of days. The taxes return for these customers still have not come, but the tax company has given them a payment upfront. This is typically why they charge so much. It is like giving the customers a loan in which the tax preparers get the cash back when the return comes in. This still usually takes a couple of weeks.
Typically this is more like 4 to 6 weeks. This, coincidentally, is the same amount of time that people will get their refund when they file online themselves. In most instances there is actually a predicted date of arrival for the money, but it depends on the website. The estimations are pretty accurate in most cases. Sometimes it is right down to the wire.
The 5 week period is usually about right for something like a federal return. A state return, on the other hand, will take about 6 to 8 weeks. The process takes a little longer when this is done by mail. A 4 week return for electronic filing may actually take closer to 6 weeks with a postal check. This is why most people will opt for the electronic return.
The electronic return is always going to be the fast route. Sometimes it will actually show up in a 4 week period. It is faster than postal mail because the processing takes place quicker. A person that files electronically can submit to the IRS and get confirmation that it was received by email. The same person can get an email that shows that this return has been accepted. It is only when a person sends something out through mail that a person has to physically open and check the return manually. This obviously takes longer than an electronic file so it will be a longer waiting period.
Rapid return filers can get their money much sooner, but the return isn’t really all that much faster. Rapid return companies just make it appear that way. People that can wait should simply file their own taxes online. The wait period may be longer, but it is fine if a person doesn’t need the money right away. People that do this will save a lot more money. They will not have the high costs of paying for this rapid “refund” for their money. Patience is a virtue.