IRS Announces the Beginning of Tax Filing Season!

January 8, 2019

IRS Announces the Beginning of Tax Filing Season!

Despite uncertainty over the current federal government shutdown, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced yesterday that they will be begin receiving and processing income tax returns on January 28, 2019.   Although there appears to be no end in sight for the current stalemate between Congress and President Trump, the IRS is set to recall a significant portion of its 70,000 employees who are currently furloughed as part of the shutdown.

If you are one of the fortunate individuals expecting a refund this year, you can rest easy knowing that there will be no delay in the IRS issuing refunds.  Congress has directed the payment of all tax refunds through a permanent, indefinite appropriation.  IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig said on January 7, 2019, “We are committed to ensuring that taxpayers receive their refunds notwithstanding the government shutdown.”

While the complexity of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) had many concerned over further delays in the start of filing season, it appears these worries are unfounded.  Chuck Rettig continued, “IRS employees have been hard at work over the past year to implement the biggest tax law changes the nation has seen in more than 30 years.”

Many software companies and tax professionals will be accepting and preparing tax returns before January 28 and will begin submitting these returns once the IRS opens its system.   For most taxpayers, the filing deadline to submit 2018 federal income tax returns is Monday, April 15, 2019.  Due to the Patriots’ Day holiday on April 15 in Maine and Massachusetts and the Emancipation Day holiday on April 16 in the District of Columbia, taxpayers who live in Maine or Massachusetts have until April 17, 2019 to file their return. 

If you’re among the millions of taxpayers who will be filing extensions this year, please remember that an extension only grants additional time to file your return.  Any potential taxes you may owe must be paid by the April 15th deadline or you could risk paying up to 25% in late payment penalties on the balance due, plus interest.  Working closely with your tax professional will ensure the greatest chance of avoiding such penalties.   

For more information regarding this year’s tax filing season, please contact a member of the Herbein tax team, or email us at

Article by: William J. Hall