Amended Tax Refund Schedule 2021: 6 Major Reasons Your Money Is Delayed; What Does Math Error Mean?

Amended Tax Refund Schedule 2021: 6 Major Reasons Your Money Is Delayed; What Does Math Error Mean?
There is still no clear amended tax refund schedule for 2021 due to the delays in the IRS processing. With that said, here are major reasons for the delay, as well as the meaning behind the confusing math error notice. Photo : Live Richer/Unsplash

IRS recently warned about 8.5 million unprocessed tax refunds due to system delays. Transactions paused include 2020 tax returns, stimulus checks, child tax credit payments, unemployment benefits, and tax overpayment refunds. Fortunately, online tools are available to check on their status. These should help eligible individuals understand the amended tax refund schedule 2021.

Millions of Americans have waited for several months for these payments. Most of the refund checks should have been delivered by summer, but now it's nearing fall and the IRS has not updated its delivery schedule. Instead, IRS officially confirmed through its website that "mission-critical functions continue" with many service delays.

Amended Tax Refund Schedule 2021: 6 Major Reasons Delivery Is Delayed

The National Taxpayer Advocate called this massive IRS delay a "perfect storm." Backlogs were built due to factors like system glitches, stimulus check payment waves, paper-filed returns processes, and other tasks related to new laws and credits. To highlight, Cnet said tax refunds might be delayed because:

  1. Your tax return has errors.
  2. Your tax return is incomplete.
  3. Your refund is suspected of identity theft or fraud.
  4. You filed for the earned income tax credit or additional child tax credit.
  5. Your return needs further review.
  6. Your return includes Form 8379 (PDF), injured spouse allocation -- this could take up to 14 weeks to process.

Another reason for the delay is the necessary tax correction process. IRS might have encountered trouble calculating recovery rebate credit, earned income tax, additional child tax credit, or plus-up payments. The IRS may, at some occasions, write a letter informing about this problem.

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Where's My Refund? How to Use IRS Online Tool

IRS often updates its database information with ongoing progress through its official webpage or Where's My Refund online tool. To use this, head to the Get Refund Status page. You need to provide your SSN or ITIN, filing status, and estimated refund amount.

If your identity gets confirmed and validated, the page will show your refund status. This should list out ongoing refund processes and date of completion. Database information is updated every evening, so you can get accurate information.

What Does Math Error Mean? A Confusing Messages Sent by IRS

Amid these delays, many Americans received "math-error notice" instead of their stimulus payments. The letter declares that the recipient has unpaid taxes to comply. The recipient is given a 60-day window to respond and complete their transaction.

Unfortunately, a majority of these errors might be linked to previous stimulus checks.

If you received any of the first, second or third stimulus checks, the IRS might have accidentally overpaid you. The change that could increase or decrease your stimulus amount depends on the tax adjustments reflected on your latest 2020 tax return. Any money overpaid is requested to be returned to the IRS.

If you disagree with the amount, you could try contacting an IRS representative through their number 800-829-1040 or 800-829-8374.

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