IRS sends letters to millions of parents who received advanceurging people to refer to these forms – letter 6419 – when filing their tax returns. But on Monday, the agency warned that some of those letters may contain incorrect information.
The misinformation could have serious financial implications for some families, as the IRS advises taxpayers to take extra care this year about the accuracy of their tax returns. The agency is still digging into a backlog of 6 million individual returns filed in 2021 – many flagged for review due to errors made by taxpayers in reporting how much they received in tax payments. government stimulus or other tax credits.
A tax refund is often the biggest check a family receives each year, with payments in 2021 averaging around $2,800. This means that there is a lot at stake if a family misreports the amount they received in their advanced CTC payments. A delay in processing at the IRS could cause refunds to be delayed for weeks or even months.
The IRS said it was unclear how many people received the wrong letters, but said it could be a small group of taxpayers who moved or changed bank accounts in December. In these cases, the CTC checks may have been undeliverable, or direct deposits have bounced back from the bank where an account was closed, Ken Corbin, the IRS’s taxpayer experience manager, said Monday in a conference call with journalists.
“So the letters may not reflect what the taxpayer actually received,” Corbin said.
Taxpayers who are concerned that the letter they received is not correct should check IRS.gov and log into their account through the site, he said. The IRS.gov website will contain the correct information for the taxpayer to use on their tax return, he noted.
“We want taxpayers to have the information they need to file an accurate return,” Corbin said.
New Child Tax Credit website
Also on Monday, the federal government launched a revamped website to help those eligible for the expanded child tax credit claim the second half of the payment they were owed.
The site, ChildTaxCredit.gov, offers a new tool that directs taxpayers to filing options, eligibility information and instructions on how to obtain the credit, according to the Treasury Department. Virtual and in-person support will be provided in multiple languages.
“A very frustrating filing season”
The potentially erroneous letters could add to what IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig has warned it could be a “very frustrating filing season” for taxpayers and tax preparers. It also encourages taxpayers to follow these tips to ensure the proper processing of their returns:
1. File electronically.
2. File as soon as possible after the IRS begins accepting tax returns on January 24.
3. Ask for direct deposit.
“If taxpayers need a refund quickly, we urge them not to file on paper,” Rettig said.
Filing an inaccurate statement — such as guessing how much you received in advance payments from the CTC — could “create a costly delay,” he added.
If taxpayers heed this advice and there are no red flags on their tax return, they should receive their refund within 21 days, according to the IRS. When asked how long it might take to get a refund if, for example, someone files on paper or has an error in their statements, Corbin replied: “At the moment we’re not really sure. .”
Reporting accurate data on advanced CTC payments is important because half of the enhanced tax credit was paid up front, with the other half to be paid through refunds to taxpayers after filing of 2021 revenue.
For example, families with children under the age of 6 are entitled to $3,600 in tax credits, including $1,800 paid by monthly checks from July 2021 to December 2021. The remaining $1,800 will be claimed on their tax return. 2021 income. But if a family incorrectly says they received $1,500 in CTC payments last year and then claim $2,100 on their tax return — more than they’re entitled to — l ‘IRS will flag the return for review, delaying its refund.
Corbin said he believed the erroneous letters were sent to a small group of taxpayers rather than millions of parents. “The online portal is fine and we encourage them to check out IRS.gov,” he said.
—With reports from the Associated Press.