&l;p&g;&l;img class=&q;dam-image shutterstock size-large wp-image-1029277222&q; src=&q;https://specials-images.forbesimg.com/dam/imageserve/1029277222/960×0.jpg?fit=scale&q; data-height=&q;538&q; data-width=&q;960&q;&g; Shutterstock
Looking for your tax refund? The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has &l;a href=&q;https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/irs-many-eitc-actc-refunds-arriving-soon&q; target=&q;_blank&q;&g;announced&l;/a&g; that tax refunds for taxpayers who claimed the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and the Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC) should begin arriving in bank accounts or on debit cards this week. That assumes that taxpayers e-filed and opted to use direct deposit and that there are no other issues with the tax return.
Remember that &l;a href=&q;https://www.forbes.com/sites/kellyphillipserb/2018/02/08/tax-facts-mixed-with-irs-tax-fiction-you-need-know-for-the-2018-tax-season/#2993fe851e05&q;&g;by law&l;/a&g;, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) must wait until February 15 to begin issuing refunds to taxpayers who claimed the earned-income tax credit (EITC) or the additional child tax credit (ACTC). In addition to normal processing times for banks, factoring in weekends and the President&a;rsquo;s Day holiday, the IRS had expected the earliest EITC/ACTC-related refunds to be available in taxpayer bank accounts or on debit cards starting on February 27, 2018. The announcement confirms that to be the case.
To check on the status of your tax refund, use the &l;a href=&q;https://www.irs.gov/refunds&q; target=&q;_blank&q;&g;&q;Where&s;s My Refund?&q; tool&l;/a&g; on the IRS website. According to the IRS, &a;ldquo;Where&a;rsquo;s My Refund?&a;rdquo; was updated February 17 for the vast majority of early filers who claimed EITC and ACTC. The tool is updated once daily, usually overnight, so there&s;s no advantage to checking more than once per day. To use the tool, you&s;ll need your Social Security number, &l;a href=&q;https://www.forbes.com/sites/kellyphillipserb/2016/03/20/taxes-from-a-to-z-2016-f-is-for-filing-status/&q;&g;tax filing status&l;/a&g;, and the exact amount of the tax refund claimed on your return.
And no, it&s;s not faster to call the IRS. IRS service representatives cannot provide tax refund information until 21 days have passed since the return was e-filed.
Don&s;t forget that factors other than the EITC and ACTC can affect the timing of your refund. The IRS issues nine out of 10 refunds in less than 21 days. However, some refunds may take longer.
For an idea of when tax refunds might otherwise be available, check out this &l;a href=&q;https://www.forbes.com/sites/kellyphillipserb/2018/02/15/2018-tax-refund-chart-can-help-you-guess-when-youll-receive-your-money/#13f4d6af8432&q;&g;tax refund chart&l;/a&g;.
If you want to get your refund as fast as possible, the IRS recommends that you e-file your tax return and use direct deposit (be sure to double-check those account numbers before you send your return). &l;em&g;If you file by paper, it will take longer.&l;/em&g; &l;a href=&q;https://www.irs.gov/refunds/get-your-refund-faster-tell-irs-to-direct-deposit-your-refund-to-one-two-or-three-accounts&q; target=&q;_blank&q;&g;According to the IRS&l;/a&g;, eight out of 10 taxpayers get their refunds by using direct deposit.&l;/p&g;