Tax Refund Timeliness

GGD-96-131R: Published: Jun 26, 1996. Publicly Released: Jun 26, 1996.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the processing and issuance of 1994, 1995, and 1996 income tax refund payments and the Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) annual test of refund timeliness. GAO noted that: (1) there are no significant differences among 1994, 1995, and 1996 data patterns; (2) the IRS refund timeliness test measures IRS performance in issuing refunds in a timely manner; (3) the results of the 1993, 1994, 1995, and 1996 refund timeliness tests were well within the IRS 40-day goal; and (4) of a sample of 100 1996 refund claims processed by IRS Kansas City Service Center, only 2 refunds were delayed.

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