By Louis DeNicola
Looking forward to getting a state income tax refund this year? You might need to wait longer than usual to get both your federal and state refunds, thanks to a new tax law and some additional anti-fraud measures. However, how you file your tax return could also impact how long you'll have to wait.
Generally, returns that are filed online (e-filed) are processed faster than paper returns, and getting a refund via direct deposit is quicker than waiting for a check to arrive in the mail. Filing your tax return earlier in the tax season could also help. Some states process returns and issue refunds on a first-come, first-served basis, and tax departments can sometimes get backed up with the surge of returns that arrive near the filing deadline.
Below, we break down how long each state expects it will take to process a return and/or issue a refund, assuming you file a complete and accurate return. Your refund could be delayed if the state requires additional documentation or has a question about your return.
We've also included a link to the website of the department or office that manages taxes for each state and a link to the page where you can check the status of your state refund (if applicable).
- During the 2016 tax-filing season, Alabama expected tax filers to receive a refund within eight to 12 weeks from the date their returns were accepted, provided they did not owe any taxes for prior years or other state agencies.
- Alaska doesn't have a state individual income tax or filing requirement.
- Electronic returns can take two to six weeks to process.
- Paper returns can take up to 12 weeks to process.
- It can take up to seven days after processing for your refund check to be mailed or direct deposited.
- Your refund will generally be issued within 10 business days if you e-file.
- If you file a paper return, it could take up to 10 weeks from the date of mailing to process and send your refund.
- It can take up to 2 weeks to receive a refund if you e-file your return.
- It can take up to three months to receive your refund if you mail your return.
- If the state needs to do an extra review of your return, it could take up to two months to process an e-filed return and up to four months to process a paper return.
- Enhanced fraud-prevention measures could delay some Colorado state taxpayers' refunds by up to 60 days.
- Another fraud-prevention measure means you could receive your refund as a check even if you requested a direct deposit.
- You may receive a refund within four business days if you e-file a return.
- It can take up to 12 weeks to process paper returns. You won't be able to track the status of your refund until it's been processed.
- Refunds are typically issued within two weeks to taxpayers who e-file.
- It could take more than seven weeks for a refund to be issued if you file by mail.
- Florida doesn't have a state individual income tax.
- Georgia will hold all income tax returns until Feb. 1, 2017.
- It could take up to 90 business days to process returns.
- If this is your first time filing a Georgia state tax return, or your first time in five or more years, the state will send a paper check if you're owed a refund.
- The Hawaii Department of Taxation recommends checking your refund status 16 weeks after you mail or e-file your tax return.
- If you e-file your return, you'll generally get your refund about seven to eight weeks after receiving the filing acknowledgment from the state.
- It can take 10 to 11 weeks to process your refund if you file a paper return.
- If you're a first-time Idaho income tax filer, it can take an additional three weeks to receive your refund because the state needs to enter your information into its system. You'll get a "not entered in system" response from the "check your refund status" tool during that time.
- Because Illinois is taking additional steps to protect taxpayers from identity theft and fraud, refunds may take longer to process in 2017 than in previous years.
- It can take up to two business days after the refund is released for you to receive your refund via direct deposit.
- It can take up to 10 business days after the refund is released for you to receive your refund in the mail.
- The Indiana Department of Revenue recommends allowing three weeks if you filed electronically and 10 weeks if you filed via paper before checking your refund status.
- E-filed returns are usually processed within 14 days.
- For 2017, Iowa is aiming to process 85 percent of paper returns in 60 days. In past years, 92 to 98 percent of paper returns were processed within 60 days.
- It normally takes the state 16 weeks to process a paper tax return.
- Direct deposit refunds from e-filed returns typically take seven to 14 days to process.
- The first day Kentucky issued refunds was February 15th.
- E-filed returns are usually processed within two to three weeks, as long as the taxpayer requests direct deposit. Allow for additional time for paper check requests.
- Paper returns are usually processed within eight to 12 weeks.
- Due to tax fraud-prevention measures, e-filed returns could take up to 60 days to process.
- Paper returns are expected to be processed within 12 to 14 weeks.
- If your return is randomly selected for additional review, it could take up to 16 weeks to process.
- You'll generally receive your refund within 14 business days of your e-filed or paper tax return being accepted.
- Maryland usually processes e-filed returns the same day that the return is transmitted. If you choose direct deposit, they will transfer your refund to your bank account within a few days from the date your return is processed and accepted.
- It could take up to 30 days for paper returns to be processed.
- If you e-file, you could get your refund direct deposited within four to six weeks with direct deposit.
- If you file a paper return, you could get your refund direct deposited within eight to 10 weeks with direct deposit.
- If you request a paper check, allow an additional week to receive your refund.
- It can take up to 14 days for the state to get an e-filed return into its system.
- It can take six to eight weeks for the state to get a paper-filed return into its system.
- Once a return is in the system, you can check the status of your return using the link below.
- Your tax refund will be issued once your return is reviewed for accuracy. Last year, that took longer than many tax filers expected.
- You may be able to check the status of your return using the link below, but wait at least 72 hours before checking an e-filed return and six weeks before checking a mailed return.
- Refunds are often mailed within 10 weeks of the state receiving a completed return.
- Although Missouri officials have not provided an estimated turn-around time for refunds in 2017, last year, taxpayers were advised it could take eight to 10 weeks to process returns and issue refunds.
- You'll usually receive your refund (or hear from the department) within four weeks if you file electronically.
- You'll usually receive your refund (or hear from the department) within eight weeks if you file by mail.
- It can take up to three months to process a paper return and issue a refund.
- You should wait at least six weeks before checking the status of a mailed return, and at least three days before checking the status of your e-filed return.
- Nevada does not have a state individual or corporate income tax.
- New Hampshire does not have a state individual income tax, but residents have to pay a flat 5 percent tax on dividends and interest income.
- It can take at least four weeks for the state to process an e-filed return.
- It can take at least 12 weeks for the state to process a paper return.
- E-filed returns are generally processed within six to eight weeks.
- Paper returns are generally processed in eight to 12 weeks.
- You'll generally get your refund six to eight weeks after the state receives your income tax return, unless there's an issue with the return.
- It can take up to eight weeks to receive a refund if you e-file your return.
- It might take up to 12 weeks to receive your refund if you file a paper return.
- North Dakota has not released an estimated turn-around time for 2016 returns, but the average 2015 refund was processed in 27 days for paper returns and 10 days for e-filed returns. It may take longer to receive your refund than in past years because of additional security checks.
- If you e-file a return it could take about 15 business days to receive a direct deposit or up to 30 days for a check to be mailed.
- You may be required to take an identity confirmation quiz. If you are, you could receive a letter with a reference number and authorization code asking you to complete the quiz online within 30 days. The quiz has four multiple choice questions, and you must answer three correctly. It could take up to three weeks to receive your refund once you complete it.
- If you e-file, you should get your refund within two weeks (or in days if you choose direct deposit).
- Refunds must be electronic. You can either provide direct deposit information or receive a debit card.
- Will not issue any refunds until after Feb. 15, 2017.
- If you file electronically, your refund will generally be issued within seven to 10 days (starting Feb. 15). However, it could take longer if you claim the Working Family Child Care Credit.
- E-filed returns take about four weeks to process.
- Paper returns take about eight to 10 weeks to process.
- It can take an additional three to four weeks to issue a refund.
- It should take 15 to 20 business days for you to receive your refund if you filed electronically.
- If you filed a paper return, you should get your refund within five to seven weeks.
- Taxpayers generally receive refunds by direct deposit, debit card, or paper check within three weeks of transmitting an e-filed return.
- The South Carolina Department of Revenue recommends waiting at least five weeks for your refund to arrive before contacting their office.
- You can request your refund be issued on a prepaid debit card.
- South Dakota does not have a state individual income tax.
- Tennessee does not have a state income tax, but for tax year 2016, residents have to pay a 5 percent “Hall income tax” on dividends and interest income from investments.
- Texas does not have a state individual income tax.
- You should receive your refund within 60 days if you e-file.
- You should receive your refund within 90 days if you file by paper.
- Your refund could be held until at least March 1 if the state can't match your W-2s with those reported by employers.
- Vermont began processing returns during the first week of February.
- If you e-file, it could take six to eight week to process and issue a refund.
- If you file a paper return, it could take eight to 10 weeks to process and issue a refund.
- It can generally take up to four weeks to process an e-filed return.
- It can take up to eight weeks to process a paper return. If you mailed your return using Certified Mail the process could take an additional three weeks.
- Washington does not have a state individual income tax.
- The West Virginia Tax Department says that you can expect your refund to be delayed significantly, and that you should only call to ask about your refund if it's been more than eight weeks since you filed your return.
- E-filed returns can take up to 12 weeks to process.
- Wyoming does not have a state individual or corporate income tax.
About the Author: Louis DeNicola is a personal finance writer and educator. In addition to being a contributing writer at Credit Karma, you can find his work on MSN Money, Cheapism, Business Insider and Daily Finance. When he's not revising his budget spreadsheet or looking for the latest and greatest rewards credit card, you might spot Louis at the rock climbing gym in Oakland, California.
Disclaimer: We know taxes are complicated, so we provide this information for general educational purposes only. It isn’t intended to be personalized legal, financial or tax advice, and we don’t guarantee the accuracy, completeness or reliability of this content. If you have questions about your personal tax situation, consider contacting an accountant, tax attorney or financial advisor. Come back to Credit Karma Tax when you’re ready to file your taxes for free!