A federal income tax refund is the amount that an individual receives because they overpaid their taxes. The standard processing delay for refunds is between 2 weeks to 1 month. Although, there is no written rule from the IRS, the refund is usually processed quickly as long as there are no issues with the return.
When to File
Federal income tax returns can be filed beginning in mid-January of the proceeding year up to April 15th. The sooner that a return is filed, the quicker the return is processed and mailed. A general rule of thumb is that the more complex the return, the higher likelihood that it will be subject to audit or review by the IRS before the refund is issued.
It is a good idea for taxpayers to keep detailed records of all deductions and credits they claim on their returns. This helps eliminate the need for additional documentation and may also help speed up the refund process.