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Americans race to file 2020 tax returns and get refunds; IRS reports 35 million returns in 1st week

Americans are apparently not messing around this year when it comes to filing their taxes and getting their refunds.
Tax Season Begins
Posted at 12:10 PM, Mar 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-01 15:20:20-05

Americans are apparently not messing around this year when it comes to filing their taxes and getting their refunds. Nearly 35 million tax returns were filed in just the first week the IRS was accepting them.

Last year included a postponed tax return deadline and delayed refunds because of the coronavirus pandemic. Lingering issues, including participating in mailing out stimulus checks to Americans, meant the Internal Revenue Service delayed the date they started to accept returns in 2021 by a few weeks, starting mid-February as opposed to late January.

Between Feb. 12 and Feb. 19, the first week they were accepting tax returns, the IRS received 34,693,000 tax returns.

In the first week of processing returns in 2020, before the pandemic was widespread in this country, the agency only received 15,777,000 tax returns.

READ MORE: Get help on how to electronically file taxes for free

The agency is also reporting more than double the amount of web traffic to IRS.gov as compared to last year.

According to the IRS, the average refund right now is about $2,920.

Filing a tax return is the only way for people who have not received a stimulus check, or received the wrong amount, to receive what is owed to them.

Tax returns for the majority of Americans are due by April 15. Last month, the IRS granted an extension for all individuals and businesses operating in Texas and counties in nearby states declared disaster areas by FEMA because of winter storms.

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NEW TAX LAW

If you’re wondering how you’re affected, not to worry, we have your back. We’re doing the work to make sure our products are up to date and that you can use them to file your taxes with complete confidence.

That said, many folks are wondering what’s in the bill and how it might affect them. Here’s a recap of some of the major tax provisions in the new tax bill and how they may impact you.

Increased Standard Deduction: The new tax law nearly doubles the standard deduction amount. Single taxpayers will see their standard deductions jump from $6,350 for 2017 taxes to $12,000 for 2018 taxes (the ones you file in 2019). Married couples filing jointly see an increase from $12,700 to $24,000. These increases mean that fewer people will have to itemize. Today, roughly 30% of taxpayers itemize. Under the new law, this percentage is expected to decrease.

Increased Child Tax Credit: For, families with children the Child Tax Credit is doubled from $1,000 per child to $2,000. In addition, the amount that is refundable grows from $1,100 to $1,400. The bill also adds a new, non-refundable credit of $500 for dependents other than children. Finally, it raises the income threshold at which these benefits phase out from $110,000 for a married couple to $400,000.

Personal and Dependent Exemptions: The bill eliminates the personal and dependent exemptions which were $4,050 for 2017 and increased to $4,150 in 2018. State and local taxes/Home mortgages: The bill limits the amount of state and local property, income, and sales taxes that can be deducted to $10,000. In the past, these taxes have generally been fully tax deductible. The bill also caps the amount of mortgage indebtedness on new home purchases on which interest can be deducted at $750,000 down from $1,000,000 in current law.

Health Care: The bill eliminates the tax penalty for not having health insurance after December 31, 2018. It also temporarily lowers the floor above which out-of-pocket medical expenses can be deducted from the current law floor of 10% to 7.5% for 2017 and 2018. So for 2018, you can deduct medical expenses that are more than 7.5% of your adjusted gross income as opposed to the higher 10%.

Fastax Has You Covered

Don’t worry about memorizing these tax changes the majority of which are for 2018 taxes that you file in 2019. Fastax has you covered and will be up to date with the latest tax laws. Call us for tax help at 661 493-8512