Despite the delay to the 2014 tax season, the IRS recently announced that the number of tax returns that have been submitted to the federal tax collection agency thus far has exceeded the filing rate for last year.

Filing Statistics

As of Feb. 7, the IRS has received approximately 27.3 million tax returns. This is an increase of 2.5% compared to the same early part of the filing period in 2013. Numbers also indicate that over 13 million of these returns have been filed electronically from the home computers of individual taxpayers, which is up 14.7% over the previous year’s amount. Professional tax preparers have filed nearly the same number of their clients’ returns electronically as well, playing into the overwhelming 96% of all returns that have been filed online so far. As a result of this increase in online e-filings, the number of direct-deposit tax refunds has gone up 9.8% compared to those in 2013. In fact, more than 87% of refunds have been issued via the direct-deposit option. Overall, the number of e-filed returns is up 4% from 2013.

Tax Refund Numbers

As far as tax refunds are concerned, data shows that a large number of refunds have already been issued to taxpayers who have overpaid on their taxes for a variety of reasons. The IRS has issued roughly 19.5 million tax refunds. The total amount they are worth is about $64.5 billion – a significant number in terms of how early it still is in tax season. The number of refunds has gone up more than 18% compared to last year, and the average refund amount is just over $3,300. This amount is up 4.6% compared to this time in 2013. These figures were compiled from Jan. 31 to Feb. 7, 2014. The IRS does note, though, that average tax refund amounts are often higher earlier in the filing season and tend to decrease as April 15th approaches.

Tax season was set to begin the week of Jan. 21 this year. However, due to the federal government shutdown last October that spanned 16 days, the IRS was not ready to open the doors to tax season until 10 days later on Jan. 31. The federal tax collection agency had to make upgrades to its computer systems and needed the extra time to ensure it was fully prepared to accept and process tax returns.

With the increased number of returns being filed earlier this year, it’s important to get yours in to the IRS so that you can claim any refund money you are due sooner than later. There is also less time to file because of the delay. There are some nice benefits to getting your taxes filed before March and April roll around, so get a head-start so you can focus on your personal and business priorities the rest of the year.

1-800Accountant is here for all of your IRS tax-filing needs. If you have personal taxes, business taxes, or both to be filed this year, call 1-888-749-01171-888-749-0117 or check out www.1-800Accountant for further details.

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Written by Taylor Covey

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