The IRS has released data for the current tax filing year.
The average refund paid to taxpayers in 2017 is $2,878, a $46 increase over last year, out of over 74 million refunds issued. If you are getting a refund, you can use IRS form 8888 to have the refund directly deposited into as many as three different accounts.
The full data from the IRS are included in the table below.
2017 Filing Season Statistics
|Cumulative statistics comparing 04/01/2016 and 03/31/2017|
|Individual Income Tax Returns:||2016||2017||% Change|
|Total Returns Received||97,631,000||93,675,000||-4.1|
|Total Returns Processed||94,988,000||91,267,000||-3.9|
|Visits to IRS.gov||274,877,786||261,081,385||-5.0|
|Direct Deposit Refunds:|
Free Tax Filing Services
With the tax deadline rapidly approaching, the IRS is reminding taxpayers that they can potentially use the IRS Free File service or go to a community tax-help site for free tax preparation and assistance.
Community Tax Help
IRS trained and certified volunteers at nearly 12,000 sites nationwide of Volunteer Income Tax Assistance and Tax Counseling for the Elderly (VITA and TCE) offer free tax preparation and e-filing. These free tax help sites are generally located in nearby shopping malls, schools and neighborhood centers.
ITA offers free tax return preparation to taxpayers who earn $54,000 or less. The TCE program is mainly for people age 60 or older and focuses on tax issues unique to seniors. AARP participates in the TCE program and helps taxpayers with low- to moderate incomes.
IRS Free File is available for anyone who earned $64,000 or less last year. Through a partnership between the IRS and the Free File Alliance, a group of 12 leading tax software companies, taxpayers can use their tax software to prepare and e-file their tax return at no cost. Visit the Free File section of the IRS website for details.
Choosing a Tax Preparer
The IRS Choosing a Tax Professional page has information about tax preparer credentials and qualifications. The IRS Directory of Federal Tax Return Preparers with Credentials and Select Qualifications can help taxpayers identify local preparers by type of credential or qualification.
All paid tax preparers must have a Preparer Tax Identification Number. They must sign the return and include their PTIN. Ask about fees before providing personal financial records and receipts, and be sure to eview the return and ask any questions you have before signing it.