If you find yourself engaging with the IRS manually via paper – through returns, letters, or election forms – you are likely one of the 29 million Americans who are experiencing significant processing delays. As highlighted in a recent CBS News article, these delays are far-reaching and are mostly impacting anyone who does not use electronic means to file their returns and related forms. The IRS is manually processing these paper forms and is still working their way through a backlog of 2019 returns as a result of delays from the pandemic. This causes not only delays in refunds, but also difficulty in communicating with the IRS. Aside from the frustration of waiting for a refund, you may also receive notices showing you are late in sending in a payment or a form – not because you didn’t file it, but because it’s in holding at the IRS and hasn’t been processed. Unfortunately, the IRS computers aren’t able to reconcile what’s in their backlog vs. what was never sent in the first place and therefore are still sending notices.
If you’re looking to find out the status of your individual return, the IRS encourages taxpayers to use their online tool.
Smith Leonard is doing all we can to help our clients impacted by these delays, but we, too, are having a hard time getting through to the IRS and finding out the status of returns. Now more so than ever, patience is a virtue, and to give you the best chance possible for expedited processing, we encourage all clients of all entity types, when possible, to e-file their returns. If you have any specific questions about your return, please reach out to your SL tax advisor.