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Additional information about New York State income tax refunds

Check your refund status online

The online tool is updated daily and provides the most up-to-date information about your refund. There's no need to phone our call center staff. The call center:

  • will not have any more information about your refund than what is already provided in the message, and
  • cannot do anything to make you get your refund faster.

Our online Income Tax Refund Status tool is the fastest and easiest way to check your refund status.  You'll be able to check:

  • if we've received your return
  • if we're processing your return
  • if your return requires further review
  • the date your refund will be issued (if approved).

You can also sign up to get email alerts, so you won't have to keep checking your refund status online. Sign up now.

E-filed vs. mailed returns

E-filing presents advantages for taxpayers and the Tax Department, such as faster refunds (twice as fast), fewer errors, postage and printing savings, and more. Taxpayers have acknowledged these advantages, and now close to 90% of New Yorkers e-file.

Whether you e-file or file a paper return, all of your return information must be entered and processed in a computerized system to check for accuracy and validity.

  • Because e-filed returns are submitted electronically, your return information goes directly into our system with no human intervention.
  • Mailed returns, on the other hand, must be removed from their envelopes, assembled in the proper order, sorted in batches, and then scanned or manually entered into our system. These additional steps extend the time from when we receive your return to when we can begin processing it.


Once your return information is entered, the system analyzes the data and checks for:

  • math errors,
  • missing or inaccurate information,
  • discrepancies with our records,
  • ineligible or duplicate claims, and
  • identity theft.

After the analysis, the system may:

  • approve your refund claim;
  • adjust your return which may result in a bill, adjusted refund, or refund denial; or
  • require further review by department staff.

Most returns do not require further review. However, if yours does, the online refund message will tell you and provide an estimate of how long it may take to complete.

In some cases, we may send you a letter asking for documentation to support the information claimed on your return. You should respond to this letter as soon as you can, as we review responses in the order they are received. The easiest and fastest way to respond is online through our Respond to department notice service.

Refund date

If your refund is approved, the system will schedule the payment date. The refund message will then provide you the amount, scheduled date, and method of payment (direct deposit, debit card, paper check).

You can also get this information by signing up for email alerts. We will notify you right away when you can expect your refund. Sign up now.

More information

Updated: March 25, 2014