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Tax-filing season kicks off as IRS begins accepting returns

The nation’s tax-filing season officially kicked off on Monday.

The Internal Revenue Service is now accepting and processing 2022 federal tax returns filed electronically. Taxpayers have until April 18 to file their return without requesting an extension. (Victims of severe storms in California, Georgia, and Alabama have until May 15, 2023 to file their returns.)

The IRS expects to receive more than 168 million individual tax returns this year. The fastest way to get your tax refund is by filing electronically and choosing direct deposit, according to the agency.

"We’ve trained thousands of new employees to answer phones and help people. While much work remains after several difficult years, we expect people to experience improvements this tax season," Acting IRS Commissioner Doug O’Donnell said in a press statement earlier this month announcing the tax-filing start date. "That’s just the start as we work to add new long-term transformation efforts that will make things even smoother in future years."

The IRS Free File program opened on Jan. 13 with participating providers accepting completed returns and holding them until Monday when they can now be filed electronically with the IRS. The program allows taxpayers who earned $73,000 or less in 2022 to file their taxes electronically at no cost using software provided by tax-filing companies.

Here are other key dates during tax-filing season you should know.

Tax text in wooden cubes and tax or vat form documents to complete Individual income tax return form for payment to Government. Calculation tax return in 2022 to 2023.
(Photo: Getty Creative)

Monday, Jan. 23

The IRS begins accepting individual electronic returns. The agency will likely receive more than 168 million tax returns, with more than 90% of those expected to be e-filed. You can file forms such as 1040, 1040A, and 1040EZ electronically or mail a paper return to the agency.

The IRS generally issues refunds about three weeks after returns are electronically filed. To get your refund even faster, choose direct deposit instead of a mailed check.

Tuesday, Jan. 31

Businesses and companies must provide W-2 forms to employees by Jan. 31, 2023, either electronically or by mail. Reach out to your employer if you don’t receive a copy of your W-2 by early February. If your employer is not available, contact the IRS at 800-TAX-1040 for assistance.

Businesses and companies also must provide certain 1099 statements to recipients by Jan. 31, 2023, either electronically or by mail. The 1099 forms include:

  • 1099-NEC for non-employee compensation

  • 1099-MISC for miscellaneous income

  • 1099-DIV for dividends and distribution

  • 1099-INT for interest income

  • 1099-R for retirement distributions

Reach out to your 1099 payers if you don’t get your statements by early February, according to the IRS. If payers are not available, contact the IRS at 800-TAX-1040 for assistance.

Businesses and companies must provide W-2 forms to employees by Jan. 31, 2023, either electronically or by mail.
(Photo: Getty Creative)

Wednesday, Feb. 15

By law, the IRS must wait until mid-February to issue tax refunds for taxpayers who claimed either the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) or the Additional Tax Credit (ACTC). If you claimed these credits, filed your return electronically, and selected direct deposit, the earliest you can expect your tax refund is Feb. 28, the IRS said, as long as there's no issue with your return.

Additionally, businesses and companies must provide brokerage 1099 statements to recipients by Feb. 15, 2023, either electronically or by mail. These forms include 1099-B (brokerage statements) and 1099-S (real estate sale or exchange). Contact your 1099 payers if you don’t receive your statement by early February. Otherwise, reach out to the IRS at 800-TAX-1040 for assistance.

Wednesday, March 15

Partners and investors in partnerships should file their partnership return by this day. Partnership returns include Schedule K-1s, forms that show an individual’s share of earnings, losses, and dividends. The Schedule K-1s are for the taxpayers to keep unless otherwise instructed, and taxable amounts are included in the taxpayers' returns as income.

Partnerships can request a six-month extension to file their tax returns. This request is separate from extension request for individual tax returns.

Tuesday, April 18 - Tax Day

Tax day traditionally falls on April 15, but this year that date falls on a Saturday. Typically, the next business day after April 15 is tax day, which would be April 17 this year. But that is also the District of Columbia’s local holiday, Emancipation Day, which the IRS observes. That means tax day this year is on April 18, which is the deadline for filing a tax return electronically (or postmarking a paper return) or requesting an automatic extension.

To get an extension, choose the option online while making your tax payment or by mailing your payment in along with Form 4868. If you request an extension, you get six additional months to file your tax return, but you still must pay any estimated tax liability by April 18.

You can also make 2022 contributions to a traditional IRA, Roth IRA, SEP IRA, Health Savings Accounting (HSA), or solo 401(k) by this date. You can also withdraw excess contributions if your tax return has not yet been filed.

If you have more than $10,000 in a foreign bank account(s), you must file the Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts, or Form 114, by this date. If you had one or more household employees in 2022, you must file Schedule H and pay household employment taxes along with your 2022 tax return.

Taxpayers who make estimated payments should make their first installment for 2023 by April 18.

You can also make 2022 contributions by April 18.
(Photo: Getty Creative)

Monday, May 15

Victims of severe storms in California, Georgia, and Alabama now have a postponed tax deadline of this date to file individual and business returns and make payments.

Thursday, June 15

U.S. taxpayers living abroad should have filed their tax returns or requested a four-month automatic extension by this date. You can request the extension by making tax payments online or mailing your payment in along with Form 4868.

Taxpayers who make estimated payments should make their second installment for 2023 by this date.

Thursday, Sept. 15

Partners and investors who requested a six-month extension to file their partnership return must file the return by this date. The partnership should also distribute Schedule K-1s to individuals by the time of filing.

Taxpayers who make estimated payments should make their third installment for 2023 by this day.

Monday, Oct. 16

If you requested a six-month extension, this is the final deadline to file your 2022 federal tax return. The deadline also applies to U.S. taxpayers living abroad who requested the four-month extension.

This is also the deadline to make 2022 contributions to SEP IRA and solo 401(k) if the employer filed an extension by April 18.

Rebecca is a reporter for Yahoo Finance.

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