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Where’s my refund? IRS says tax return payments from 2020 will still need to be processed in 2022

The pandemic and all the changes to tax laws because of it have really thrown a wrench in the IRS being able to get refunds out as fast as they used to.

Thousands of Americans are still waiting on the unemployment benefits refund they’re owed from their 2020 tax returns.

It’s looking like they’ll need to wait until 2022 for these 2020 refunds.

Related: Plus up stimulus check payment schedule, deadlines, and how to claim


How unemployment tax refunds work

2020 had some of the highest rates of unemployment due to the pandemic closing down millions of businesses.

The American Recovery Plan Act was put into place to help those who were directly impacted financially from the pandemic.

This made it so anyone that was collecting unemployment did not need to pay taxes on the first $10,200 of unemployment benefits they received.

Related: Over 800,000 stimulus checks worth $1,100 were sent out yesterday, who gets them?


The date it went into law was March 11, 2021, after many Americans it would have helped had already filed their 2020 taxes.

This made it so the IRS needed to go through each of these returns and issue refunds.

The IRS shared that 16 million Americans are eligible for this type of refund, but only 11.7 million have been completed.

Related: There are 13 tax deductions to know about to prepare for your 2021 taxes


Where is my refund?

The benefits for those eligible started being refunded to people in May and have since slowed down.

The IRS focused on the simple tax returns first before moving onto the more complex ones.

The IRS plans to distribute more refunds before the end of 2021, but it isn’t clear who exactly will see them.

The refunds will continue to be sent well into next year.



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