WILKES-BARRE, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Tax season is officially underway, which means taxes can start to be filed. But some may be waiting longer than others for their refund.

If you didn’t receive your tax return for a few months last year, you’re not alone and you could face the same fate this tax season.

January 24th is the beginning of tax-filing season and the busiest time of year for Liberty Tax Franchise Owner Joe Mihalka.

“We’ve been open since January 2, but today is the first official day that the IRS is opening up. We have quite a few appointments today. We’re expecting people, now that they’re open, to funnel in a little more, knowing the IRS is going to actually start accepting returns,” said Mihalka.

Around 30 million taxpayers had their refunds delayed last year because of pandemic-related issues and the IRS is still playing catchup. The Treasury Department is warning of more delays again this year.

“With the Path Act, they are delaying returns with certain credits on them until February 15 of processing those returns. There are some new things out there this year with the advanced child tax credit. Those people who didn’t work on Social Security or Supplemental Security Income can now file for a return,” Mihalka explained.

Experts are saying the expanded child credit is a potential pitfall as most parents only got half the money they were owed. The IRS is now sending out letters to help people properly file for the rest.

“And that can be a little complicated, you have to fill out the form on how many dependents you have, you may have new dependents because you had a new child, you fostered, you adopted, shared custody can create a complication,” said Mark Steber, Jackson Hewitt, Chief Tax Information Officer.

Unemployment benefits are taxable however stimulus checks are not, but they still need to be reported on 2021 tax returns and Mihalka says it’s best to be early.

“I suggest getting in sooner rather than later if you have all of your paperwork that way the IRS can have it and start processing it,” said Mihalka.

The fastest way to get a refund is to file electronically and set up a direct deposit. The IRS says most people who do get a refund within 21 days.

The deadline to submit your taxes this year is April 18, to learn more click here.