Income Tax Refund: How Long Will It Take? Find Out the Department’s Timeline & the Way to File ITR

Here's how to file ITR and the timeline for return


Many people look forward to receiving their income tax refund after filing their tax return. But how long does it actually take for the refund to come? Let’s explore the process and understand the timeline.

Income Tax Refund: How Long Will It Take? Find Out the Department's Timeline & the Way to File ITR

Understanding the Timeline

  1. Filing the Income Tax Return (ITR): The first step is to file your ITR for the financial year 2023-24. You can do this online through the Income Tax Department’s e-filing website.
  2. Verification: After filing your return, you need to verify it. This can be done online using methods like Aadhaar OTP, net banking, or through a physical form (ITR-V) sent to the Centralized Processing Center (CPC) in Bengaluru.
  3. Processing: Once verified, the tax department processes your return. This involves checking the details and verifying your income and deductions. If everything is correct, they approve your refund.
  4. Refund Issuance: After processing, the department issues your refund. This is usually done via direct credit to your bank account.

How Long Does It Take?

The time taken to receive an income tax refund varies. Here’s a general timeline:

  • E-verification: If you e-verify your return, processing starts quickly. This can take around 7-10 days.
  • Physical verification: If you send a physical ITR-V form, processing can take up to 30-45 days from the date the department receives the form.
  • Processing and refund issuance: After verification, the processing and refund issuance usually take 20-45 days. So, in total, it can take about 2-3 months to receive your refund from the date of filing.

Also read: Budget 2024: Massive Boost for Women’s Empowerment Programs Expected!

Steps to File Your ITR

  1. Gather Documents: Collect all necessary documents like Form 16, bank statements, investment proofs, and other relevant documents.
  2. Register/Login: Go to the Income Tax Department’s e-filing website ( Register if you are a new user, or log in if you already have an account.
  3. Choose ITR Form: Select the appropriate ITR form based on your income source (ITR-1, ITR-2, etc.).
  4. Fill in Details: Enter all required details like personal information, income details, and deductions.
  5. Upload Form 16: If you have Form 16, upload it to auto-fill some details. Double-check for accuracy.
  6. Claim Deductions: Ensure you claim all applicable deductions like Section 80C (investments), Section 80D (medical insurance), etc.
  7. Review and Submit: Carefully review all entered details. Correct any errors and submit the form.
  8. E-verify: Verify your return using Aadhaar OTP, net banking, or by sending a physical ITR-V form to CPC.


Filing your ITR correctly and on time ensures a smoother refund process. Remember to verify your return promptly to avoid delays. While the refund process can take a few weeks to a few months, being patient and keeping track of the status on the e-filing portal helps. Following these steps and understanding the timeline will make the process easier and help you get your refund without hassle.


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