On the heals of the 16-day government shut-down earlier this month, the IRS has now announced that it will not begin accepting 2013 federal income tax returns until January 31, 2014 at the earliest.
IRS Commissioner Danny Werfel said, “readying our systems to handle the tax season is an intricate, detailed process, and we must take the time to get it right. The adjustment to the start of the filing season provides us the necessary time to program, test and validate our systems so that we can provide a smooth filing and refund process for the nation's taxpayers. We want the public and tax professionals to know about the delay well in advance so they can prepare for a later start of the filing season.”
The IRS urges that there will be no advantage to paper-filing your tax returns rather than waiting for e-filing to become available. As always, even with the delay, e-filing with direct deposit will be quickest way to get a refund.