The IRS Refund Cycle Chart for 2014

FastThe IRS Refund Cycle Chart for 2014 looks like this:

You will get your IRS refund within 21 days.  Probably.

There is no predictable cycle that can be charted anymore, thanks to identity thieves who steal refunds.  To combat this type of fraud, the IRS has added layers and layers of checks and tests to the tax return processing routine.  Now, your tax return can be stopped at any number of fraud-alert checkpoints, for further inspection.  Bona fide tax returns get stopped for scrutiny all the time, so even if you are reasonably sure you’ve prepared your tax return correctly and there aren’t any typos, the IRS might still decide something looks fishy and delay your return.  This can cause your IRS refund to get delayed.  There is not a predictable pattern to the process, so the idea of an IRS Refund Cycle Chart is now outdated.  Instead, there’s actually something better.

The IRS Refund Tracker is Better than an IRS Refund Cycle Chart for 2014

Now you can go to the IRS website and create a login to get information about your own tax return and where your refund might be any day.  It’s called the IRS Refund Tracker and it’s available here.  Getting personal information about your tax return is better than anything an IRS Refund Cycle Chart 2014 will tell you anyway.  The chart is simply a schedule showing two week periods, by which you should receive your IRS refund after it’s been accepted by the IRS.  But it was never any guarantee and never gave you any more information than when you should be seeing your refund in your bank account or in the mail.

The IRS still says that everyone should receive refunds within 21 days, and even goes as far as claiming that 9 out of 10 taxpayers received their refunds within 10 days.  However, delays and fraud alerts can delay your refund indefinitely and the IRS can’t or won’t tell you any more than that, even if you call the IRS refund hotline.  The people answering the hotline phones can only tell you what the tracker tells you.  If the IRS has a problem with your return and they require something from you, they will send you a letter in the mail.