Bob Dyer, a long-serving and now-retired columnist for the Beacon Journal, may be remembered.
Dyer was the Beacon’s “columnist with attitude,” retiring in December 2020.
Dyer is now in his golden years. He stated he’s been doing a lot of reading, playing a lot of golf, and is considering writing a book.
“But for the first time in 30 years, I’m just enjoying doing nothing,” he remarked.
He still has an attitude, though, and a new feud – with the IRS.
He and millions of other Americans are still waiting for refunds from the IRS due to a backlog that dates back to the outbreak of COVID-19.
Dyer has been waiting for more than 16 months for a total of $1,027 from the IRS and $182 from the state of Ohio.
“Can you imagine how much interest and penalties I’d owe the IRS if I hadn’t paid them $1,209 for 16 months?”” Dyer recently told me.
He called the IRS several times for updates and finally got one person to state that records show his refund was “started” on May 7, 2021. He’s still on the lookout.
Dyer requested assistance from the local IRS office in Akron at the end of April. He didn’t get a response.
Dyer sent me an email earlier this month with the subject line “Dyer vs. The IRS.”
Betty Lin-Fisher is a writer who lives in New York City.
Dyer refers to himself as “your favourite columnist,” as veteran Beacon readers would recall.
I asked him whether he was seeking assistance from his “new favourite columnist” this week.
“I said, of the surviving columnists at the Beacon, I’ll call my all-time favourite remaining columnist,” Dyer responded. I went to a consumer writer who solves a lot of problems, and I felt if I’m really stuck, I’ll contact Betty and you can quote me.”
Putting aside the jokes, I attempted to contact the IRS on Dyer’s behalf and was unsuccessful.
“Federal privacy law forbids the IRS from commenting on specific taxpayers,” said IRS spokesperson Bruce Friedland.
There are still 10.5 million tax returns to be filed.
I inquired of Friedland on the status of the delayed refunds in general.
In an email response, Friedland stated, “The IRS is opening mail within typical timescales, and all paper and electronic individual returns received before October 2021 have been processed provided the return had no mistakes or did not require further examination.”
“As of June 1, 2022, we had 10.5 million unprocessed individual returns, including those received before to 2022 and new tax year 2021 returns.”
“Of them, 2 million require error correction or another special handling, while the remaining 8.5 million are paper returns awaiting review and processing.” This work does not normally require us to interact with taxpayers, but it does necessitate special treatment by an IRS employee, therefore the IRS is taking more than 21 days to issue any connected refund in these cases, and in some cases, this work could take 90 to 120 days.
The IRS will offer taxpayers an explanation if an adjustment is made to any Recovery Rebate Credit, Child Tax Credit, Earned Income Tax Credit, or Additional Child Tax Credit claimed on the return. Taxpayers are recommended to keep checking the website “”Frequently Asked Questions About Refunds During Tax Season.”
Dyer’s situation- What happened to Dyer was as follows:
Dyer electronically submitted his federal taxes on February 19, 2021. He owed $2,559 and mailed a check, which he claimed was swiftly cashed.
Dyer and other Beacon Journal and Gannett employees were forced to take repeated one-week furloughs in the summer of 2020. For those furlough weeks, we applied for unemployment benefits.
Congress passed the American Rescue Plan Act on March 11, 2021, which permitted taxpayers to deduct up to $10,200 in unemployment compensation paid in 2020 from taxable income if their modified adjusted gross income (AGI) was less than $150,000.
If you are affected by this change, you should not revise your taxes if you have already submitted them.
People who already submitted their tax returns claiming unemployment compensation as taxable income will get automatic refunds — or refunds will be applied to tax debts — according to the IRS.
Dyer utilised a tax programme to recalculate how much he would have owed the IRS if his unemployment pay, which was less than the maximum of $10,200, had not been taxable.
It’s a substantial sum. Instead of $2,559, he would have owed $1,532. As a result, he owes $1,027. He can modify his Ohio taxes and receive a refund of $182 instead of the $5 he paid after he receives his federal refund.
Dyer sent a certified letter with receipt to the local IRS office recently. The receipt was returned to him.
“I haven’t heard a single thing,” she says “he stated “They certainly aren’t assisting me. At the very least, you send an email saying, ‘Sorry, we’re behind.’ Just say anything to me. For the love of God, don’t simply disappear.”
“I recognise that COVID has made life more difficult for everyone, and I understand that the IRS has personnel concerns, “he stated “But, my God, according to an IRS agent, this whole affair started on May 7, 2021. It’s now June 15th, 2022, and it’s still sitting.”
While Dyer wants his money from the IRS, he wants to be clear that “this is not going to make or ruin me.””
“However, there are many people who live paycheck to paycheck, and some of them are fighting to put food on the table.” And if I’m getting this kind of treatment, I have to assume that a lot of other people are getting the same treatment.
“It’s distressing to me that a major agency is now 15 months behind on what they started.””
I asked Dyer if he had used the IRS’ “Where’s My Refund” website, www.irs.gov/refunds, to check the status of his refund, as the IRS recommends. We got online while talking because he hadn’t. However, we realised he required the precise amount of his refund and the amount he owed for his previous tax return. He has a more recent figure based on his own calculations, but “there’s no freaking way they did that arithmetic for the internet,” he asserted.
If you’re in a similar situation to Dyer, here’s some information from an IRS spokeswoman concerning different tax delays:
How long will it take for my tax return to arrive? The IRS recognises the importance of processing tax returns and issuing refunds on a timely basis.
We’ve completed the processing of all error-free returns submitted before October 2021, and we’re still working on the returns that need to be manually evaluated owing to issues. We’re still rerouting tax returns and taxpayer correspondence from behind-the-scenes sites to areas with more workers, and we’re taking other steps to minimise any delays.
In the order in which they are received, tax returns are opened and processed. The processing of the return, whether it was filed electronically or on paper, may be delayed if it contains an error, such as a mistake involving the Recovery Rebate Credit and the Child Tax Credit, is missing information, or there is suspicion of identity theft or fraud. We’ll solve it without contacting you if possible. We’ll write you a letter if we need further information or need you to confirm that you sent the tax return.
Depending on how promptly and precisely you answer, and the ability of IRS workers trained and working under social distancing criteria to complete the processing of your return, it could take 90 to 120 days to resolve these concerns.
What should I do if I haven’t yet received my refund? In most cases, no further action is required, but you can check Where’s My Refund? for more information.
Alternatively, you can log in to your account and see what’s going on. If you filed electronically and received an acknowledgement, you don’t need to do anything else except answer any requests for information as soon as possible.
Check Where’s My Refund? if you filed on paper. We are processing your return, but it may be under review if it says we have received it, are processing it, or are evaluating it.
If you filed before October 20, 2021, and you’re wondering where your refund is, you’ve come to the right place. has no information, your return has been opened but no work has begun on it. We’re putting forth a lot of effort to clear off the carryover inventory.
Please do not submit a second tax return or inquire about your return’s status with the IRS.
What is the status of the IRS’s processing of revised individual tax returns, Form 1040-X?
We had 2.1 million unprocessed Forms 1040-X as of June 4, 2022. We are processing these returns in the order in which they were received, and we are working diligently to clear the inventory. Instead of up to 16, the current term can be greater than 20 weeks.
Do not file a second tax return or inquire about the status of your amended return with the IRS. Taxpayers should continue to keep an eye on the situation. What happened to my Amended Return?
What is the status of the corrections to the unemployment compensation exclusions?
The Internal Revenue Service is continuing to analyse the tax year 2020 returns and make changes for taxpayers who paid taxes on unemployment compensation and are eligible to deduct the compensation from their income.
Over 11.9 million refunds totalling $14.6 billion have been issued by the IRS to date. Some taxpayers may get refunds, while others will have their overpayment applied to their outstanding taxes or other bills.
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- Artificial intelligence is being used by the IRS to assist callers with making payments and completing simple tasks
Within 30 days of the adjustments being completed, the IRS will write a notice to impacted taxpayers informing them of the errors. For further information, see the 2020 Unemployment Compensation Exclusion FAQs.