IRS pushes early filing date back, Americans to receive refunds later

Thursday, January 10, 2013 - 11:27pm

Millions of Americans who file income taxes early each year won't be able to file early this year. The IRS has pushed back the date to accept early tax returns. Taxpayers can't file until January 30th, and they won't get their refunds until at least mid-February -- a couple of weeks later than normal.

"People are panicking right now. Am I going to get a refund? Because I heard of this cliff. Well, your tax law changes for 2012 didn't affect that much. It's 2013 that's going to be affected because you are already seeing the changes now, you already say the 2% off your paycheck," said Terry Hansen, general manager at Jackson Hewitt.

Recent changes to tax law were made by Congress in order to avert the fiscal cliff. But that has now caused IRS delays.

"It's really an unfortunate situation that Congress waited until the 11th hour to make a decision on something that was months, if not years in the making," said Congressman Beto O'Rourke. 

Waiting longer for a tax refund is a major dilemma for many Americans who depend on the money to pay bills and other taxes.

While the changes seem grimm for most, some will still benefit.

"There's a lot of new changes, like I said, that we got this year. The changes went up a bit. The married couple [exemptions] go to $3,800," said Hansen.

The fiscal cliff plan extended temporary tax breaks for business owners for another year, but businesses will have to wait even longer than individuals to file their taxes.

"Some of your calculations for the businesses have to wait until mid-February before the form is even ready to go. So, that's going to tie up another group of people."

The IRS continues to encourage Americans to start getting their tax returns ready now so they can beat the rush on January 30th.

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