Survey: Tax Season Swings into the Red

ON THE FRONT LINES (clockwise from top left): Hundshamer, Jones, Mills, Lopez-Williams, Mauro, Raboin, Newman, Behar

Efiilings lag by 5 million as practitioners call it a “nightmare.”

Surviving Busy Season 2021:
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By Beth Bellor
CPA Trendlines Research

The IRS is narrowing the gap between this season and 2020, still behind in almost every area but with more deficits now in the single digits. That’s what passes for good news these days.

MORE: Another Tax Season from Hell? | Pros Process 44% of Tax E-filings | Tax Professionals Report Tough Slogging | Busy Season 2021 Gets Off to Weak
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Meanwhile, tax practitioners are reporting further deteriorations in their busy season, with 35 percent now terming is “much worse” than the year-ago, up about 11 points from the earlier soundings on the CPA Trendlines Busy Season Barometer. Join the survey. Get the results.

On March 17, the Treasury Department and IRS announced the 2020 individual federal income tax filing due date would be automatically extended from April 15 to May 17. Since then, some 25 states and localities – but not all – announced similar extensions.

BUSY SEASON RED SHIFT: The percentage of tax practitioners reporting a “much worse” season than last year grew 11 points to 35% from before March 15 to after March 15. (CPA Trendlines Busy Season Barometer)

As of March 19, the latest data available, the service had received 76.1 million individual income tax returns, down 9.6 percent from the same period last year, when the season began 18 days earlier. It had processed 67.7 million returns, down 16.6 percent, for a current processing rate of 89 percent.