How Tax Refund is Calculated?

Your tax refund has to do with the IRS requirement that every taxpayer must pay their taxes gradually throughout the year. To pay your taxes, your employer will take a small portion of your paychecks and forward it to the IRS. This is your tax withholding.

All employees must use the Employee’s Withholding Allowance Certificate to let their employers know how much tax should be withheld. If you remember claiming allowances to adjust your tax withholding with Form W-4, that’s good. Because, if the total amount of taxes withheld is more than your anticipated tax bill, you will receive a refund. It is as simple as that.

On Form 1040, if the amount on Line 19 (total taxes withheld) is more than Line 16 (total tax bill), you will receive a tax refund. In other terms, your tax withholding minus total tax bill equals your tax refund.

When do I receive my tax refund?

The answer to this question is uncertain and it depends. If you filed your tax return electronically and there are no errors, the Internal Revenue Service is likely to issue your tax refund in three weeks. If you filed a paper form though, it may take a little bit more than that. So you can expect to receive your tax refund in three weeks or about a month after you file your tax refund.

However, if there are any errors on your tax refund whether you file electronically or a paper form, you will have to correct the mistakes which will result in a delay of your tax refund. From the table below, you can see the 2020 refund schedule.

Deposit SentRefund Check Mailed
February 15, 2020February 26, 2020
February 20, 2020March 2, 2020
March 2, 2020March 5, 2020
March 5, 2020March 17, 2020
March 14, 2020March 22, 2020
March 22, 2020March 28, 2020
March 26, 2020April 6, 2020


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