Having your refund deposited directly is the fastest way to get the money. The IRS pays most refunds within 21 days, but some refunds will be held up. Filers claiming the earned income tax credit or refundable child credit will have to wait until at least early March for their refunds, or even later if they file paper returns. Measures to help detect tax identity theft and refund fraud could also result in delays. Use the “Where’s My Refund” tool on IRS’s website to check on your refund.
You can ask the IRS to directly deposit a refund into up to three bank accounts. They may be in your name, in your spouse’s or in both names for a joint account. Taxpayers can split their refunds using tax software or by completing Form 8888. Any refund beyond the account amounts will be mailed in the form of a paper check.