The IRS announced yesterday that there will be a two-week delay to the 2014 tax season due to the federal government shutdown. 

Because the shutdown came at a peak busy time for the IRS, when the agency was preparing for the 2014 tax season, programming, testing, and deploying over 50 separate systems needed to handle the massive task of processing 150 million tax returns. 

About 90 percent of IRS operations were closed during the government shutdown. In addition to its normal workload, the agency has to complete additional training, programming, and testing to meet requirements for refund fraud and identity theft detection and prevention.

The agency is attempting to shorten the delay, so a final announcement of the official date will be coming. The date will be sometime between January 28 and February 4. 

The IRS is reminding taxpayers that the April 15 tax deadline is set by statute and will remain in place, and that taxpayers will receive their tax refunds much faster by using e-file with direct deposit. If necessary, taxpayers can request an automatic six-month extension to file their tax return with Form 4868.


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