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Check Your Bank Account: You May Have Received Your 2021 Tax Refund

By Julie Jason, originally posted on Forbes.com.

If you filed your 2021 tax return early online, opted for a direct deposit into your bank account, and the IRS found no “issues” with your return, look at your bank account — you may see your refund on deposit. So says a Feb. 24, 2022, IRS press release, “Tax Time Guide: Use the ‘Where’s My Refund?’ Tool or IRS2Go App To Conveniently Check Tax Refund Status.” 

If you filed early but claimed the Earned Income Tax Credit or the Additional Child Tax Credit, the refund should arrive around March 1. 

If you check your bank account but have questions about where your refund is, there are two IRS sites that can help you: Where’s My Refund? and IRS2Go. 

Tax Refund Details

If you go to the Where’s My Refund? page on IRS.gov, you can find details about your refund. You’ll need your Social Security number or ITIN (Individual Taxpayer Identification Number), along with your filing status (single, married filing jointly, head of household, etc.) and the exact amount of your return. 

Once you enter that information online, you can see the status of your refund (return received, refund approved, refund sent). The IRS notes, “If you filed a complete and accurate tax return, your refund should be issued within 21 days of the received date. However, processing may take longer under certain circumstances.” 

IRS2Go is the official mobile app for the IRS. You can use the app to check on the status of a tax refund. (If you need to make a payment, you can access IRS Direct Pay through the app.) 


As a reminder, the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is designed to provide a tax break for taxpayers who have low or moderate income. You can check to see if you qualify for it by using the EITC Assistant at IRS.gov.

The Additional Child Tax Credit, according to the IRS, is “a credit you may be able to take if you are not able to claim the full amount of the [Child Tax Credit].”

Don’t Normally File A Tax Return?

Here’s another important reminder: If you don’t normally need to file a tax return, but you have children, you do need to file in order to get child-related tax credits such as the Child Tax Credit and the Child and Dependent Care Credit. 

The Child Tax Credit allows a taxpayer to receive up to $3,600 for each child age 5 and under, and $3,000 for each child ages 6 through 17 (ages are determined at the end of 2021). No income is needed to claim the credit, but the qualifying child must have a Social Security number.

The Child and Dependent Care Credit allows a taxpayer a credit of up to $4,000 for one qualifying person, and up to $8,000 for two or more qualifying people, based on qualifying expenses for child or dependent care while the taxpayer either worked or was looking for work. For details, see IRS Publication 503.

Need Help In Filing Returns?

The IRS offers two important resources to help in filing accurate tax returns.

The Tax Time Guide provides important information on tax changes and how they affect taxpayers, while Publication 17, “Your Federal Income Tax For Individuals,” is a 140-page guide containing explanations and examples for 2021 tax returns.


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