IRS Will Pay Tax Refunds in Shutdown After All

The White House announced that the IRS will now issue refunds to taxpayers during the shutdown.

The Internal Revenue Service had said in its contingency plan that it would not issue refunds to taxpayers if the partial government shutdown were to continue into tax filing season. However, the Trump administration announced today that it is reversing this policy.

The decision was announced by the White House’s Office of Management and Budget in a press conference on Monday.

“Tax refunds will go out,” said OMB’s acting director Russell Vought, who also noted that this was a change from past government shutdowns.

Prior to today’s announcement, the IRS had said that tax refunds were among the agency’s “non-excepted activities” that are impacted by a shutdown and therefore not carried out.

Tax Filing Season

The IRS also announced today that the tax filing season will begin on January 28.

The agency will be recalling a significant portion of its workforce, currently furloughed as part of the partial government shutdown, to work as it gears up for the tax season.

“We are committed to ensuring that taxpayers receive their refunds notwithstanding the government shutdown. I appreciate the hard work of the employees and their commitment to the taxpayers during this period,” said IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig.

About the Author

Ian Smith is one of the co-founders of He has over 20 years of combined experience in media and government services, having worked at two government contracting firms and an online news and web development company prior to his current role at FedSmith.