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What you need to know about unemployment tax refunds, IRS timeline, and more


Millions of Americans who have paid too much taxes on unemployment benefits are getting a refund.

Angela Lang / CNET

If you received unemployment benefits during the pandemic last year, listen up. Based on new rules under the American rescue plan, workers who received unemployment benefits in 2020 cannot be taxed on that money (up to $ 10,200 for single stocks) as they would have been in previous years. Since the new law came into effect after millions filed all their taxes and claimed that money as income, those taxpayers are now eligible for a good break in the form of an IRS refund.

The IRS has already started sending the first round of these tax breaks. The agency will continue to refund the money throughout the summer it processes tax returns and reviews taxes paid on unemployment benefits. The agency said refund amounts will vary, and not every adjustment will result in a refund.

We’ll explain the unemployment tax exemption here, and the details we’re still waiting to hear. You may also want to know the status of the weekly $ 300 Bonus Unemployment Benefits as more states forgo pandemic unemployment benefits. If you are wondering about other money you may be entitled to, find out about the improved here child tax credit, how much you could get as a parent and information about the upcoming IRS child tax credit portals. This story was recently updated.

Unemployment Tax Refund: 9 Important Things to Know

The IRS began paying unemployment benefits to taxpayers who paid tax on the benefits (who treated them as income) when they filed their returns earlier this year. This is what to expect.

  • The tax break is for those who have made less than $ 150,000 adjusted gross income.
  • Refunds began the week of May 10 and will continue through the summer as the IRS reviews tax returns. More complicated returns may take longer to process.
  • If the IRS determines that you owe a refund of the unemployment tax break, it automatically sends a check.
  • You do not have to file an amended tax return to claim the exemption. (Here’s how track your tax filing status and refund online.)
  • Refunds are made as a direct deposit if you have provided bank account information on your 2020 tax return. Otherwise, the refund will be sent as a paper check to the address that the IRS has available.
  • The IRS runs the recalculations in two stages, starting with those who qualify for the tax break of up to $ 10,200. It will then adjust the returns for those married-filing-joint taxpayers who qualify for the tax break of up to $ 20,400.
  • The IRS will send you a message explaining the corrections within 30 days of a correction being made.
  • You cannot track the progress of your refund through the IRS Get My Payment tracker, the Where is my refund tool, the modified Return Status tool, or another IRS portal.
  • The IRS can use the refund to cover any overdue debt, such as unpaid federal or state taxes and child support.

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Unemployment tax refund: what we still don’t know

The IRS has provided some information on taxes and unemployment benefits on their website. We still don’t know how to contact the IRS if there is an issue with your tax credit refund. (Here’s what we know about contacting the IRS stimulus check problemsWe have contacted the IRS for clarification.

To learn more, here’s everything you need to know about it child discount up to $ 3,600 per child and who is eligible.

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