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The TurboTax Blog > Tax News > IRS Announces E-file Opens January 30, 2013

IRS Announces E-file Opens January 30, 2013

Tax News

Today, the IRS announced that it will begin accepting e-filed tax returns for the vast majority of U.S. taxpayers on January 30, about a week later than expected.

Tax Return

The IRS anticipates that it will be able to process tax returns for about 120 million taxpayers, including those affected by AMT, the educator expense deduction, the higher education tuition and fees deduction and the state and local sales tax deduction.

Even though the IRS does not anticipate any tax refund delays due to the week slip in accepting refunds, there are some simple steps you can take to make sure you get your tax refund back as quickly as possible:

1.  File Now!  Don’t wait!

  •      TurboTax is up-to-date with all recent tax law changes and has been accepting e-filed tax returns since January.
  •    TurboTax will hold and securely submit your tax return to the IRS on a first-in, first-out basis. So filing now puts you first in line for your tax refund.

2.  E-file and Use Direct Deposit

  •   E-file and direct deposit are the fastest way to get your tax refund.
  •  The IRS does not anticipate any associated tax refund delays once processing begins on January 30. The IRS expects to issue 9 out of 10 tax refunds in 21 days or less.
  • The IRS will not process paper returns before January 30.

3.  Get Expert Answers to Your Tax Questions

  •     Taxpayers wondering how recent tax law changes may impact their taxes can contact TurboTax tax experts, who are available year round to answer taxpayer questions, free.
  •   Only TurboTax lets taxpayers talk to certified public accountants, Internal Revenue Service enrolled agents or tax attorneys as often as they like while they’re preparing their tax return, free.

According to IRS, taxpayers claiming the residential energy credit and businesses claiming depreciation and amortization and general business credit will be able to file tax returns in late February or early March due to additional forms and processing requirements.

There’s no need to wait to file your tax return. Get started now to get a jump on your tax refund.

Comments (397) Leave your comment

  1. I received an email yesterday saying that the IRS had rejected my return because of an error in last name and SS# not matching. First, I’ve been using the same name and # for 19 years for my kids, and second, I thought processing didn’t begin til the 30th. Is this a scam?

    1. No, The IRS are accepting efiles but not processing them until the 30th. Check the spelling of your number and SS#. 1 letter or number wrong is all it takes

    2. this also happened to me very frustrated and not sure if i should e-file again or what? definaintly like only paying a little but feeling like I should have payed the extra and went to a tax place

    3. TurboTax (as well as other tax providers) are working with the IRS to start sending returns through the IRS system, in the order we received them, as they ramp their systems up for the official launch on January 30th.

      Because of this “limited early processing” some customers started (and will continue) seeing IRS notifications of acceptance or rejection.

      Please note the IRS does NOT start processing refunds for any returns until the 30th.

      Last year, 9 out of 10 taxpayers received their refund in less than 21 days. The same is expected this year.

      If you have any questions about this, let us know.

    4. Hi Debbie,
      Yes Christopher is correct and this is not a sham. The IRS issued a release stating that they would not begin accepting tax returns until 1/30 this was a statement made for the entire industry no mater who you filed with. Fortunately the IRS worked with a few providers to accept some tax returns a little earlier. Regarding your error for last name and social security number please double check that the social security number was entered correctly and follow these instructions If you need additional help you can talk to one our agents live. You can get to an agent from the page I gave you by going to the help along the way tab.

      1. Hello Lisa,
        I know the IRS is not accepting returns until tomorrow, but I did put all my info in on turbotax so it’s there first thing in the morning. I triple checked our socials and names, but the error I’m getting is:

        We could not e-file your return for the following reason: Duplicate Social Security Number: A tax return with the same Social Security number has already been submitted – in other words, it appears your trying to e-file the same return twice. If you need to change this return, you’ll need to file an amended return on paper, by mail.

        But that was the first time I had attempted to submit. Again, I triple checked my socials and names. I did already contact the IRS, and they gave me a list of numbers I needed to call for Identity Theft.
        I guess my question is, since they’re not actually accepting until tomorrow, is this possibly a glitch in the system reading last years return? I already called one place on the list, should I continue to call the rest or wait and see if it will accept tomorrow, and then call the numbers I was given if I continue to get the same error.

  2. why did i get letter saying irs accepted my return early i thought they were not accepting until jan 30th i received first email stating it had been e-filed successfully on jan 22nd and then on jan 26th i received email that irs already accepted it. so has it been accepted or is it really not until jan 30th?

    1. TurboTax (as well as other tax providers) are working with the IRS to start sending returns through the IRS system, in the order we received them, as they ramp their systems up for the official launch on January 30th.

      Because of this “limited early processing” some customers started (and will continue) seeing IRS notifications of acceptance or rejection.

      Please note the IRS does NOT start processing refunds for any returns until the 30th.

      Last year, 9 out of 10 taxpayers received their refund in less than 21 days. The same is expected this year.

      If you have any questions about this, let us know.

    2. I have been waiting for 3 weeks for Turbo tax to update its forms so I can file. The bad part about this is, other company are processing even tho it sits waiting for the IRS. If I could file with Turbo tax instead of waiting for forms, I would be wasting my time typing now.

      1. Hi Robert – Which forms do you think other firms have but we don’t? Let us know! –Christopher

      2. Schedule D capital gain and loss, which no one at Turbo tax can explain when the form will be available. This is a Turbo Tax issue not IRS.

      3. Does anyone have any answers at Turbo tax other than 30 Jan the IRS will start. I am still waiting for an honest answer.

  3. Is Tubrotax reliable because when I put in my W2 and deductions I gotten I higher refund. My first time and I am scared to file.

    1. Hi Teena,
      Congratulations on finishing your tax return! Yes, TurboTax has been helping customers for 26 years. We have tax experts who are CPAs, IRS enrolled agents and tax attorneys who work here year round and also help develop the product. There’s no need to worry. There are many reasons you may have received a higher refund than before. TurboTax asked you questions so you get all of the tax deductions and credits you deserve. I’m not sure what method you used before, but you may have received more tax deductions and credits than before or may have had more taxes taken out or made less income.
      If you have more questions, remember we’re here for you. You can ask one of our tax experts your question for free at

      Also, here is a support article which gives more information regarding why your tax refund may be higher
      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis

  4. This afternoon I filed my taxes with H&R block, same person has been doing them for 6 years. But today I feel that paying H&R $319 to file my taxes is ridiculous! Since the governement isnt accepting any returns until the 30th of this month, can I call H&R and cancell my return submittal so I can use a different company or online service? I should note that they were e-filed. Thank you.

    1. Hi Rachel,
      I’m not sure what their policy is on cancelling payments after they prepared your taxes. I also don’t know how their system works while they are stockpiling your tax return. It can’t hurt to check so you can save hundreds and see how easy it is to prepare your taxes with software. At TurboTax you can also ask tax experts your tax question for free.

      Hope you can get your money back. Check back with us if you can. Good luck!
      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis

  5. The IRS is accepting some now! A test batch….I used taxact and got the notification today my return was accepted. It says the IRS is “accepting a small number of returns between the 23rd and the 29th” before the official date…

  6. Why does it state that my Illinois return is able to e-file on 1-25-13 but I cant efile my federal due to the energy credit form not being avaiable. It stated I can efile the federal on 2-7-13 but this article says late Feb. Which is it?

  7. I have a question. I efiled last week with the understanding that this would be “qued” and ready to go on 1/30 when the IRS started to pull… or request… returns. I was shocked and amazed to get a email today (1/25/13) that my return was accepted. Does this mean that they are starting to process some claims early. Maybe testing the system? And does this mean tat I should (we hope) have our return 21 days from today or 21 days from the 30th?

  8. I filed my return via Turbotax and received an email this morning at (12:27 am) that the IRS has accepted my return, but I’ll have to wait til the 30th for additional refund information.

  9. I received a text that the it’s accepted my return @ 2am. Will they hold them until the 30th before they start processing them?

  10. I just received a text at 2am that the IRS accepted my return. Will they hold it until the 30th before they start processing it?

  11. Everything I read says TurboTax was released my forms until the 30th. Today I received a text message saying IRS accepted my forms early why is this, When r TurboTax said it’s not going to release them until the 30th

  12. I finished my tax returns on 1/16 and I just got a message via text that my returns were accepted. I thought the IRS was not going to start accepting returns until 1/30. Is this correct??

  13. Hi I filed my federal taxes on 1/16 and I just got message via text that my taxes refund was accepted but I thought the IRS wasn’t accepting returns until 1/30. Is this right?

  14. I efiled my federal return last week where it is being held for IRS processing until the 30th. I have realized I did not enter the amount of health ins paid by my employer (new entry on line 12 DD this year). This will not affect my tax refund but do I need to file an amended return or can I just log back in and enter it on my W2 page since it hasn’t been processed by the IRS yet?

  15. Why am I not able to take the “standard” deduction for sales tax? The field will not update.

    I was sent the email that all the forms were in place.

  16. If I read the IRS site right – if you are claiming your mortgage interest from your home loan you also will not be able to file till feb or march … is that correct?

    1. Hi PJ,
      No that is not for the mortgage interest deduction. That is a mortgage interest credit for credits issued by government agencies. You can file and deduct your mortgage interest now.
      Here is a list of forms that are delayed and mortgage interest is not one of them
      Also please see the explanation of mortgage interest credit
      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis

  17. I wonder why I’m getting a ton of emails every day with others’ questions and answers, yet never got a response to my question which is will the IRS only be issuing refunds one day a week again?

    1. HI Sach – Sorry about the delay… This year, the IRS didn’t create a Refund Cycle Chart as they have in past years. I imagine that it would be the same, however, regarding the once per week refunds. The IRS says most taxpayers’ returns will be processed within 21 days. As always, e-file and direct deposit are the quickest way to go.
      Thanks for your patience!

    1. Hi Derick – I agree it can be frustrating. With the delays this year resolving the “fiscal cliff” issues, it do go a little later this year. Most years, the IRS begins processing the middle of January. Filing by e-file and with direct deposit is still the quickest way to get refunds. Let’s hope for an earlier date next year!

  18. Hello I e filed my return the morning of the 10th. On the 30th when turbo tax releases my file to the IRS will I be part of the first come first serve situation. I heard that turbotax sends e files first come first serve so does that mean because I filed on the 10th that my file will be recieved by IRS faster?

    1. Hello Sabrina – The files will be sent in the order that TurboTax received them. And, the IRS will process them in the order they receive them. The IRS is saying that most taxpayers’ returns will be processed within 21 days.
      Hope this helps answer your question!

    2. I efiled on the 18th and got a email this morning from TurboTax that my return was accepted today 1/25… Have you gotten anything like this?

    1. HI Trena – please see my response to your post above. It should be available with the next update.
      Let us know if you still don’t see it after tomorrow.

  19. My forms are complete with the exception of form 8917. Why is this. I went on line and pulled up the form. Why is it not in the Turbo Tax system?

    1. Hi Trena –
      I understand it can be frustrating when you are ready to file but a form you need isn’t completed yet in the software. That form will be available in TurboTax on Jan 24th. It is still being finalized in the TurboTax software. Remember, the IRS is not accepting returns until Jan 30th this year.

      Here is a link with availability dates for forms..just fyi


  20. I have finsh filing preparing my taxes and when I indicate to have my refund direct deposit nothing happens. So in other words, I do not proceed to any page to know if I taxes are on hold until January 30, 2013. What has happened.

    1. Hi Carol – Turbo Tax will hold your tax return until January 30th when the IRS begins accepting returns for processing. If you click the File tab, you can check the e-file status. It may show Pending or something else.
      Let us know if that works and gives you the information you need.

    1. Hi taxpayer – It is possible, but that is completely up to the IRS and the information that is on your tax return. Just make sure your return is complete and accurate. Also, e-filing with direct deposit is usually the quickest route to take for refunds.
      Thank you,

    1. Hi Erica –
      I haven’t heard that. I do know the IRS will begin processing returns on January 30th this year. And, most taxpayers will have their returns processed within 21 days. The best thing to do is to make sure your return is complete and accurate. Also, e-file with direct deposit will result in the quickest refunds.
      Hope this helps…

  21. So does TurboTax now have all the new tax laws in place? If I buy the software at the store, it updates when it connects or something, right? I would hate to submit my taxes now and find out later that I could have gotten more back (or paid less). I know people were waiting for the new forms because of the ATRA or whatever it was.

    1. Hi Madeline,
      Yes TurboTax online has been open and up to date since 1/3. There’s no reason to wait. There are only a few forms related to depreciation and the residential energy credit that IRS has to update. 90% of taxpayers are able to file now. regarding the software at the store, it will ask you to update when you load it on your computer. It is always best to update before you start using your software and before you finish your taxes. TurboTax online is automatically updated. You may want to try TurboTax online. Happy Filing!

      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis

  22. So my husband is waiting on a k-1 to file. Will i still only be waiting 21 days if i cant file till the middle to end of february when the accountant says they should have the k-1 finished by

    1. Hi Soniclisa-
      The IRS is sticking by the 21-day estimate. Last year, 90% of all refunds were issued within three weeks of receipt, and they estimate the same timeframe this year. Personally, we usually file in late March and receive our refund within three weeks.

  23. I had to save the file because there was no “transmit my return now button” after I put the security code in. Is this because it can not be E filed until the 30th. And if so does that mean I go back in and then transmit the form on the 30th? thank you in advance

    1. Hi Tina-
      The missing button was the result of a program bug, which has been resolved. You should be able to go in and submit your e-file now. It will be held on the Turbo Tax servers until the 30th, then it will be sent to the IRS for processing.

      Let us know if you have any more issues with submitting your return!

    1. Hi Lawana-

      Did you mean your taxes were done on January 10? If so, the IRS does not begin processing returns until January 30. Your return is on the Turbo Tax servers and will be submitted to the IRS on January 30. Last year the IRS processed the majority of e-filed returns with direct deposits within 21 days, and they are anticipating the same timeframe this year. You should look for your refund by the third week of February.


    1. Hi Carol,
      TurboTax Freedom Edition will be ready next week on 1/30 when the IRS begins accepting tax returns. You can also file with our Free federal edition now.
      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis




  25. I need to know if you can help me since I havent filed in the last two years, I need to file for those years and 2012 and whatever money is due to me apply it to the last two years, should cover most of it!

  26. I also have rentals, so that is why I thought I would have to wait on the 4562. I don’t have much deprec, I am thinking about deleting the form.

  27. I don’t understand this, when I did my taxes it is not telling they are waiting on form 4562. I am waiting on employee expenses. I can not believe we have to wait 21 days now from acceptance to deposit this year. That is terrible. I did even know that until I read this blog. Boy they screwed us this year.

  28. Hi I was looking up the return schedule on the 2012: and it said if you have them accepted by the 17th then we should have our refund on the 25th

  29. Is there a reason why the IRS is not accepting returns until Jan. 30th? Also, if my return is accepted on the 30th, does that mean I will not receive my refund until the middle of February? What’s going on with the IRS?

    1. Hi Tabatha,
      The IRS has stated that the refund delivery time this tax season is 21 days from acceptance of tax returns with e-file combined with direct deposit. E-file and direct deposit are the fastest way to get your tax return. You can start preparing your tax return now and TurboTax will hold your tax returns and securely submit them to the IRS on 1/30.
      Good luck filing your taxes and don’t forget if you have questions we have CPAs available to answer your questions for free.
      Thank you,

  30. If I submitted my 2012-1040A returns through TurboTax online on 01/9/2013, until when should I expect to be on “pending” status through my turbotax online account?. Taking into consideration the recent IRS updates. Your response is greatly appreciated.
    Thank you

    1. Hi Phillip,
      Congratulations on completing your taxes! Your tax return will be held and securely submitted to the IRS on 1/30 the day they begin accepting tax returns. Once the IRS receives your tax return, you will receive a notice about whether it has been accepted by the IRS
      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis

  31. I have a couple of questions…

    1. TurboTax site says that the sales tax forms will be ready on 01/09, but on 01/10, they are not. ?

    2. TurboTax site says I can file on 01/10, but I logged this morning, and the site still says not ready. ?

    Is it a government delay, an out of date message on the site, or both? I am ready to go, but nobody else is…

    1. Hi JayB,
      I tested and logged into the site and I am not getting the message that the site is not ready. We have been open for filing since 1/3. People are saying they already completed their tax returns. You should be able to log in and prepare your taxes. Here is the site

      Also, can you tell me what sales tax form you are referring to. If you are claiming the state and local sales tax deduction the IRS will have the related form completed by 1/30, the day they begin accepting tax returns, however you can still prepare your tax return in TurboTax now.

      Also, if you have any more questions you can talk to our tax professionals for free.

      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis

      1. I have completed my return, but not actually filed it yet. I was waiting for the 10th (what your site stated was the date I could submit the return), but this morning it still said no… ? I’ll try again…

        I also was referring to the IRS standard state sales tax deduction, given – but not sure it matters, as I am taking the “standard” deduction. So, should I wait until the 30TH for the IRS to have this form, or go ahead and file now?

  32. So I already have my tax form if I do it next week I will be in the front of the line? How long is the norm to get a return on dd if you are one of the first filed

    1. Hi Donna,
      The IRS stated that the refund delivery time this tax season is 21 days from acceptance of tax returns with e-file combined with direct deposit. E-file and direct deposit are the fastest way to get your tax return. Happy filing!
      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis

  33. I hope the IRS doesn’t have another snafu this year. They will get so many returns on that date (cause mostly everybody will have their w-2’s, 1099’s, etc). We probably won’t get a refund until April!!!!!

    1. Hi Jazzy,
      Hopefully not. The IRS states that refund timing is 21 days after IRS acceptance with e-file and direct deposit together. They don’t foresee any further delays for tax returns under the normal review process. The best way to get your tax refund fast is to prepare your taxes as soon as possible so you can be first in line to have your taxes submitted to the IRS on 1/30.
      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis

      1. 21 days is not the norm with e-file and direct deposit it has been right at or under two weeks. for the last 5 years. I have a feeling they don’t have the money to pay and are trying to prolong the inevitable.

      2. Hi Lisa,

        Thanks you have been so much help. For the past four years I have been filing with Turbo Tax and its awesome highly recommend it. I only have an issue today that i filed. I received an e-mail that said: Your federal return is lined up for processing
        The IRS is not ready to accept tax returns that have certain deductions or credits in them – like yours. Your return will be automatically sent to the IRS as soon as they’re ready to process it. This is a nationwide delay for all returns like yours – no matter who prepares them.” PLZ help

  34. Is it just businesses claiming depreciation and amortization or also individuals claiming depreciation and amortization (ex. on rental property) who will have to file late due to additional forms and processing (i.e., Form 4562)? The general news stories out there did not make the distinction “businesses claiming depreciation and amortization.) Thanks in advance for answering.

    1. Hi Beloizeau,
      Yes, you are correct. Individuals claiming depreciation and amortization on rental property will have to wait for Form 4562 to be updated by the IRS. Please keep checking back for updates.
      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis

      1. How can I file now when your forms are not ready even tho you announce they will be ready by yesterday

      2. Does your company ever reply in a timely manner, with out making you think you are being answered but your not.

      3. I’m sorry I don’t know how to post on this. I got a few emails back after using snaptax and the first ones told me it was rejected then accepted, why is that? I didn’t change anything!
        Now it’s telling me my state tax return is rejected. It says,
        “You can file again after after you fix the error in your return, and then select “Approve” in the Answer Questions and get ready to efile sections of snaptax” what does this mean? And what is code error REJ001? Please help!!

      4. Hi Lisa,
        What effect does the IRS delay have on state filing? I’m in AZ and their version of ‘Where’s my refund?’ also states that my refund is not in their system.

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