The IRS has been working hard to catch up on the processing of 2021 income tax returns and related correspondence that were delayed due to the pandemic and staffing shortages. More than 4.7 million original individual income tax returns were filed in 2021; by the end of this week they will all have been processed. The IRS is taking aggressive steps to catch up its backlog including creating special teams of employees focused solely on processing aged inventory, and expediting the hiring of thousands of new workers and contractors to help with this ongoing effort.
Another significant technological improvement has allowed the correction of tax returns with errors to be completed more than twice as quickly. In 2021, an IRS tax examiner corrected an average of 70 tax returns with errors per hour. This year, 180 to 240 returns can be corrected with the new technology. To emphasize the significance of this advancement, the IRS reported that as of one year ago, there were 8.9 million tax returns in error resolution, but as of earlier this month, there were only 360,000 returns awaiting correction. By the time you finish reading this, they may already have been processed!
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