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Ask Kim

When to Expect Your 2014 Tax Refund

Depending on how you filed, it could take up to six weeks.

I just filed my taxes. When will I get my refund?

See Our Slide Show: 15 Reasons You Might Get Audited

It depends on how you filed. You’ll usually receive your refund about three weeks after e-filing or six weeks after the IRS receives your paper return. You can check on the status of your refund by using the IRS’s Where’s My Refund? tool. Updates are available within 24 hours after filing electronically or four weeks after mailing a paper return. You’ll need to provide your Social Security number, filing status (single, married filing jointly, married filing separately, head of household or qualifying widow) and the exact amount of your refund from your return.

Last year’s average refund was about $2,800. Use at least some of the extra money to improve your financial situation (see 10 Smart Uses for Your Tax Refund).

And instead of waiting for a refund next year, get more money in your paycheck now. Use our tax withholding calculator to see if you should submit a new W-4 with your employer and reduce the amount of income tax withheld from your paychecks. See Set Your Tax Withholding Right for more information.

Got a question? Ask Kim at askkim@kiplinger.com.