Why My Taxes Still Say Processing 2021

Tax season can be a stressful time for many individuals, especially when there are delays in processing returns. If you find yourself wondering why your taxes still say “processing” in 2021, there could be several reasons behind it. In this article, we will explore some common factors that may contribute to the delay and provide answers to frequently asked questions regarding this issue.

1. High Volume of Returns:
One of the most significant factors causing delays in processing tax returns is the sheer volume of filings. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) processes millions of tax returns each year, and this can lead to a backlog, causing delays in processing times.

2. COVID-19 Pandemic:
The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted numerous aspects of daily life, including tax administration. The IRS has faced unique challenges due to limited staff availability and implementing new safety protocols. These factors have contributed to delays in processing tax returns.

3. Errors or Incomplete Information:
If there are errors or incomplete information on your tax return, it can lead to processing delays. Common mistakes include missing signatures, incorrect Social Security numbers, or mathematical errors. The IRS may need to manually review these returns, further prolonging the processing time.

4. Additional Verification:
In some cases, the IRS may choose to conduct additional verification for certain tax returns. This can be due to suspected fraud, discrepancies in income reporting, or other red flags. While this extra step is crucial for maintaining the integrity of the tax system, it can cause significant delays for individuals awaiting their refunds.

See also  Do You Pay Income Tax Where You Live or Where You Work

5. Identity Theft Concerns:
Identity theft is a growing concern, and the IRS takes precautions to protect taxpayers from fraudulent activities. If there are indications of identity theft or suspicious activity on your tax return, it may result in a delay as the IRS investigates and confirms your identity.

6. Missing Documentation:
If you have claimed certain deductions or credits that require supporting documentation, such as proof of income, receipts, or other forms, the IRS may request additional information. Failing to provide the necessary documentation promptly can lead to delays in processing your return.

7. Errors in the IRS System:
Although rare, errors in the IRS system can occur, causing delays in processing tax returns. These errors can range from technical glitches to data entry mistakes. If your return is affected by such an error, it may take additional time for the IRS to rectify the issue and process your return.

8. Tax Law Changes:
Tax laws undergo revisions and updates regularly. If there have been recent changes in tax laws that affect your return, the IRS may need extra time to implement these changes and process your tax return accurately.


1. How long does it typically take for a tax return to be processed?
The IRS aims to process electronic tax returns within 21 days. However, this timeframe can be extended due to the factors mentioned above.

2. Can I check the status of my tax return?
Yes, you can check the status of your tax return using the “Where’s My Refund?” tool on the IRS website or by calling the IRS hotline.

See also  What Is a Certificate of Release of Federal Tax Lien

3. Will I receive any notification if there is an issue with my tax return?
If the IRS needs additional information or encounters an issue with your tax return, they will typically send a notice by mail.

4. Should I contact the IRS if my tax return is still processing?
Unless the IRS specifically requests additional information from you, it is generally recommended to avoid contacting them regarding the processing status. This is because it can further delay the processing time.

5. What happens if the IRS finds errors in my tax return?
If the IRS identifies errors in your tax return, they may make corrections or adjustments. You will receive a notice explaining the changes, and if applicable, the impact on your refund or tax liability.

6. Can I amend my tax return if I made a mistake?
Yes, if you realize that you made a mistake on your tax return, you can file an amended return using Form 1040-X. However, it is crucial to wait until your original return has been processed before filing an amendment.

7. How long should I wait before contacting the IRS about my refund?
If it has been more than 21 days since you e-filed your tax return or six weeks after mailing a paper return, you can contact the IRS to inquire about your refund status.

8. Can I expect interest on my delayed refund?
If the IRS delays your refund beyond a certain time frame (generally 45 days after the filing deadline), you may be entitled to receive interest on the refund amount.

See also  How to Pay State Taxes Indiana

In conclusion, several factors can contribute to the delay in processing tax returns in 2021. Understanding these reasons and being patient can help alleviate some of the stress associated with waiting for your tax refund. If you have concerns about your tax return, it is always advisable to consult with a tax professional or contact the IRS directly for guidance.

Leave a Reply