The IRS recently announced that processing times would be longer for 2012 individual taxes (processed in the spring of 2013) due to the rash of identity thefts and fraudulent tax returns. No word on how long the delays would be, but based on past experience, I believe up to a week longer.
As of March 4, 2011, there were an estimated 335,341 fraudulent tax returns filed, up over 180% from the prior year, per CNN.com (click here to view article). These returns, if all were processed, cost more almost $2 billion dollars! The figures for 2012 processing season were higher and the federal government is trying to catch these returns before processing is complete.
The last time the IRS added additional checks to the tax return process, a few additional days were needed per return and that was before e-filing became so popular. Since so many returns are now e-filed, the computer checks will be enhanced and that may mean more reviews done by IRS agents.
So, be prepared for a longer wait for your refunds in 2013.
I welcome your comments and questions.
Thomas C. Hodge, CPA
The Hodge Group
3040 N. Menard Avenue
Chicago, IL 60634