Questions About Your Tax Return? Do This Before You Call the IRS
We're getting closer to the April 18 deadline for filing tax returns. If you call the IRS, you can expect long wait times.
Katie TeagueWriter II
Katie is a writer covering all things how-to at CNET, with a focus on Social Security and notable events. When she's not writing, she enjoys playing in golf scrambles, practicing yoga and spending time on the lake.
ExpertisePersonal Finance: Social Security and taxes
A recent graduate of the University of Minnesota, Nina started at CNET writing breaking news stories before shifting to covering Security Security and other government benefit programs. In her spare time, she's in her kitchen, trying a new baking recipe.
The deadline for getting your taxes filed is approaching quickly, and if you've got questions about your tax return and you call the IRS, you can expect to wait on hold to speak with a representative.
Last year, only about 13% of callers reached an IRS employee, according to The Washington Post. Knowing that, it's important to keep in mind that the average phone wait time will only get longer as Tax Day arrives next week.
Raphael Tulino, an IRS representative, underlined the importance of finding answers through online resources: "It's IRS.gov, IRS.gov and IRS.gov first before you call."
The IRS has about 600 local offices around the country as well as staffing a toll-free hotline. You may be able to answer some of your tax questions with online resources too: The IRS has a tool called the Interactive Tax Assistant that walks you through various inquiries to help you determine whether your income is taxable, whom you can claim as a dependent and what your filing status is.
Call this IRS phone number to ask about tax refunds and more
Before you make a call to the IRS, note that the call volumes are high and you may have to wait a long time to speak with a representative. During April, the IRS says that wait times are higher on Mondays, and the best time to call during the day is before 10 a.m.
To get started, call 800-829-1040 to reach the tax agency about an issue you're having with your taxes. Make sure you have the following information on hand to verify your identification.
Your Social Security number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number
Filing status: single, head of household, married filing joint or married filing separate
Got a specific tax question? There's a hotline for that
Streamline your call to the IRS by calling one of the many IRS phone numbers that address a specific question or topic.
IRS numbers to call
Scheduling an appointment with the IRS
Locating free tax clinic near you
Taxpayer Advocate Service
Interpretation services for Spanish speakers
Interpretation services for other languages
Deaf or hard of hearing assistance
IRS Disaster Hotline
Requesting IRS to mail paper tax forms
Ordering a tax transcript
Checking status of a tax refund
Self-employed taxpayer assistance
Reporting phishing or tax scams
Estate and gift tax law questions
Victims of identity theft assistance
Checking status of amended tax return
Complex tax topics the IRS won't discuss on the phone