Delays in Receiving the Adoption Tax Credit-What You Can Do

Dawn Davenport


adoption tax credit delays

Waiting for your adoption tax credit? You’re not the only one.

Delays in receiving the Adoption Tax Credit refund is probably the most discussed topic this week on every adoption forum or group on the internet.  Creating a Family has been inundated with complaints about delays in receiving the Federal Adoption Tax Credit refund and requests to find out what is happening.  We have attempted to do just that. I will caution that due to the fast approaching tax filing deadline, folks at the IRS are hard to reach and clear information from them is not forthcoming. I do however think we can shed some light for you on what is the current lay of the land for those who are hoping to get an Adoption Tax Credit refund this year and make suggestions if your return is being reviewed. Check out our Top Ten Tips for Avoiding Delays When Filing for the Adoption Tax Credit.

The Health Care Reform bill, which became law on March 22, 2010, changed the Adoption Tax Credit from a standard tax credit (where any taxes you owe are reduced by the amount of the credit) to a refundable tax credit (where you receive the credit in the form a refund regardless how much you owe in taxes).  In other words, a refundable tax credit lets you get a cash refund even if you owe no taxes. CNN Money calls this “the tax equivalent of hitting the jackpot.”   To further fuel the jackpot analogy, it is possible to get this refund for adoptions which took place up to five years ago if previous adoption credits have not been fully used. It may even be possible to get the refund for expenses from a failed domestic adoption.  And if the children you adopted domestically had special needs, you can get the refund even if you did not incur the expenses.  In short, the Adoption Tax Credit is a big darn deal for the adoption community and has certainly promoted adoption.  The purpose of this blog is not an introduction to the Adoption Tax Credit, but you can get more information from the extensive resources on our Adoption Tax Credit page on the Creating a Family website, including an hour long podcast.

Delays in the Adoption Tax Credit in 2011

The IRS is struggling with the Adoption Tax Credit refund this year.  Although the law making it refundable was passed in March of last year, the actual forms for filing did not come out until February of 2011. That’s right, less than two months ago. The IRS has not had much time to train its employees and develop an infrastructure to process this new refundable credit.  Some IRS offices have acknowledged that their personnel have only received training within the last few weeks.  From what I’m hearing, some IRS personnel have not yet been trained and are giving erroneous information.  As long as I’m giving the IRS its due, I should add that the IRS claims that many of the refunds requesting the Adoption Tax Credit are missing required documentation or have errors, and as such should be delayed.

Also, since the adoption credit for adoptions in 2010 is no longer based on a person’s tax liability and since families can go back to capture credit from adoptions as far back as five years ago, many people are requesting huge (or at least substantial) refunds. I have no way of knowing, but it is possible that the IRS had not anticipated these large refunds and is reeling a bit and playing catch up.  Nicole Albrecht, our wonderful adoption tax credit expert, says that delays are not uncommon with other potentially large refundable tax credits for the same reason.  The IRS has acknowledged that “We’re just being very careful because it’s a big chunk of money.

Timeline for IRS Delays

Most adoptive parents trying to claim this adoption tax credit are reporting some variation of this timing.

  • They mail in their return with supporting documentation of their adoption expenses.
  • Some, otherwise known as the “Lucky Few”, report that they have received their full refund, including the adoption tax credit.
  • Most report receiving a letter from the IRS saying that they have received the tax return and it is being reviewed [which in reality is a partial audit].  “Once our review is completed we may send you your refund, ask you for additional information or clarification on items on your return, or deny your refund. If you do not agree with our decision, you will have a chance to appeal.”
  • They later receive a letter from the IRS requesting that within 30 days they send in documentation that they qualify for this credit and that they have actually incurred these expenses. Often parents report that they have already sent this documentation with the original filing.  We have not heard from anyone who received the “you are in review” letter who then received their refund rather than the “we need more information” letter.  However, I have been told that this has happened to a few people working with the Tax Advocacy office (more on them later).
  • At some point, most people receive the part of their refund that is not the adoption tax credit.

From the reports we are getting from adoptive parents, there is no overarching pattern as to who gets through easily and who gets reviewed. Our analysis would make my college statistics teacher apoplectic, but we hope to do better with the results of the survey at the end of this blog.  We have no way of knowing how many Lucky Few are out there, or even if they are few in number.  The vast majority of people who have contacted us are the Unlucky Many who are having their returns reviewed, but that stands to reason since the Lucky Few are content and happy and not likely to contact us just to brag.

For the Unlucky Many , it doesn’t seem to matter whether they adopted domestically or internationally or whether they adopted a child with special needs or not.  It does not seem to matter where people filed their returns, so apparently no one office is more likely to send adoption tax credit returns for review.  Interestingly, it does not seem to matter how large the refund was, which if true, somewhat defeats the “IRS trying to save money” argument.  I have heard from a couple of people who were told by the Tax Advocacy office (more on them later) that the IRS plans to review ALL returns claiming the Adoption Tax Credit at some point, even if refunds had already been sent. I don’t have independent confirmation on this, but it’s worrisome since many people will have already spent their refund.

How Long Will IRS Review for the Adoption Tax Credit Take

Unfortunately, estimates on how long the IRS review will take are all over the board. Let’s start with what the IRS is saying.  On their website, the IRS says to allow 6 weeks after they receive your further documentation for a response. Note that they did not say that they would be finished with their review in 6 weeks, only that they would be back in touch within that time. IRS Publication 552 includes information on tax record keeping and has a section on how to get tax help. The part of this section that deals with checking the status of your refund on Where’s My Refund (located on the IRS website) says:

Wait at least 72 hours after the IRS acknowledges receipt of your e-filed return, or 3 to 4 weeks after mailing a paper return. If you filed Form 5405, 8379, or 8839 [adoption tax credit] with your return, wait 14 weeks.

We have heard reports from people who say that the IRS has told them over the phone that is will likely be more like 60-90 days due to their backlog.

Tax Credit for Special Needs Adoptions

Adoptive parents of special needs children are allowed the maximum tax credit regardless of their adoption expenses.  The instructions for IRS Form 8839 specify what is considered a special needs adoption.  Keep in mind that approximately 80% of children adopted from foster care will qualify.  Basically, if you are receiving any form of subsidy from the state, your child will likely qualify.  Unfortunately, this does not apply to children with special needs adopted internationally.

We are hearing reports from a few parents that the IRS is requesting proof of their adoption expenses even though their child qualifies as a special need adoption.  Documentation of expenses is not required for domestic special needs adoptions. If this has happened to you, contact the North American Council on Adoptable Children at

What to Do if Your Adoption Tax Credit is Being Reviewed

  • If you received the first letter notifying you that your return is under review, start pulling together all your documents, including proof of payment for all qualified adoption expenses. The Internal Revenue Manual provides the actual guidelines used by IRS auditors when reviewing your return to see if you qualify. It is really helpful to look through section of this manual to see what type of proof they expect to see. You can also check the instruction for Form 8839, for more specifics.
  • Have your documents ready to mail or fax the day you receive the second letter.
  • When you receive the second letter requesting documentation, read it carefully and make sure you send them exactly what they are requesting.
  • Make sure to include the bottom tear-off portion of the notice along with your document.
  • Write your taxpayer identification number on each page of the documentation in case they get separated.
  • Mail to the specific IRS address included with the notice.  You can also fax in your documents, although we’ve heard from some people that the fax number is continually busy. If that is the case, don’t waste time continuing to try. Mail your documents in a manner where you can track their progress.
  • Don’t argue with the IRS that you’ve already sent them this information with the original return.  A different office may be reviewing the adoption tax credit part of your return and your original documentation may have stayed with your return. You may be right that you shouldn’t have to resubmit documentation, but would you rather be right or get your credit refund sooner?
  • Keep copies of everything you send to the IRS.
  • Remember: Getting angry will not help and will give you wrinkles and ulcers—neither of which you need.  Resign yourself that nothing will happen as fast as you want.
  • Choose one of the following mantras to repeat over and over:
    • Good things come to those who wait.
    • Patience is a virtue.

Taxpayer Advocate Service

The Taxpayer Advocate Service (TAS) is an independent organization within the IRS that helps without charge taxpayers who are experiencing economic harm due to not receiving their refund.  They consider economic harm as not being able to provide necessities like housing, transportation, or food.  We have heard from families that have been accepted because they could not afford to pay for therapeutic services for their child with special needs. They will also help taxpayers who believe that the IRS system “is not working as it should”.  You must first try to resolve your problem through normal channels.

If you qualify for TAS help, you’ll be assigned an advocate to help you navigate the IRS system. There is at least one taxpayer advocate in every state. You can find their phone number at the TAS website or call their toll-free line at 1-877-777-4778 or TTY/TDD 1-800-829-4059. You can also check out their Facebook page, or send them a tweet at @YourVoiceAtIRS.

Help Make the Adoption Tax Credit Permanent

A family should be the birthright of every child.  I firmly believe that adoption is the best option for many children to have a permanent and forever family.  I don’t need to tell you that adoption is expensive—often very expensive, and the Adoption Tax Credit is often the deciding factor in whether or not a family will be able to adopt.  The refundable Adoption Tax Credit will expire Dec. 31, 2011 unless it is renewed by Congress.  There are several bills in Congress right now that would extend the Adoption Tax Credit. Creating a Family will keep you up to date with what is happening on the Adoption Tax Credit and let you know what you can do to support these efforts.  Please sign up for our weekly email newsletter to stay in touch with what is happening. It helps you by keeping you informed of what’s new in the adoption world, and it helps us further of mission of adoption education and support.  You can find the sign up form on the upper left side of this page.  We will never share or sell your email address or name with anyone. Period.

Share your experience in the comment section.  You might also find helpful two subsequent Creating a Family blogs on the Adoption Tax Credit:


P.S. Creating a Family is not equipped to answer your specific tax questions or give you specific tax advice. You should ask you tax professional questions about your situation since our information is only intended as general information. We do have a terrific tax expert, Nicole Albrecht, who handles questions that come to our Ask the Expert tax credit page.  Needless to say, she is “up to her ears in alligators” right now crunching numbers and filling out forms like crazy, so she won’t be answering any more of your tax questions until after next week. In the meantime, if you have general questions on the Federal Adoption Tax Credit, listen to or download our hour long Creating a Family radio show we did on this topic, check out the Q and A’s on our Adoption Tax Credit Ask the Expert page , and all the resources on our Adoption Tax Credit page.

P.P.S. Check out this fun video of a family that adopted five kids from foster care who found out that due to the Adoption Tax Credit they were going to get a refund of $54,292. Their annual income was around $39,000. I should probably note that I don’t know whether they have received their refund or if they are being reviewed.


Image credit: Xtina L

15/04/2011 | by Dawn Davenport | Categories: Adoption, Adoption Blog, Blog | 721 Comments

721 Responses to Delays in Receiving the Adoption Tax Credit-What You Can Do

  1. Avatar says:

    Everyone loves what you guys are usually up too.

    This type of clever work and coverage! Keep up the amazing works guys I’ve included you guys to my own blogroll.

  2. Avatar Angeles says:

    Hi! Someone in my Facebook group shared this website
    with us so I came to give it a look. I’m definitely loving the information. I’m book-marking and will be tweeting
    this to my followers! Outstanding blog and brilliant design.

  3. Avatar nicole j says:

    he all My fellow Adoptive parents. i have been reading these blogs for about 3 weeks… i have senr
    t my amended re5urn 4/14/12 the recieved it 16 th got first lertter in june ..wait 45 days did that got another letter wait another 45 day…. decided to Get TA called myself in bginnjuly 10th got a return call…in 2 days…i just want to say my TA got my return dd friday ..i adopted t3special need kids in 2010. n 1 2011! call ta tell them your getting ebicted lights off somethin…to those who took out loans to adopt? ur ludicrus…y? where they do that at who garanteed this credit.? idiots.. and those talking about i planed vacation and trips and now i cant go?? gues what? TOiooo DAMN BAD the credit and for you too BAll OUT! anyway those who adopted for the right reason..THE CREATOR TAKE U THRU IT..SO U CAN GET TO IT! STAY FAITHFULL ALMOST 4 MONTHS AND I GOT FULL CREDIT PLUS INTEREST…GOD WORKS FOR HIS WORKERS not the Talkers!! sirry! keep ur head up Struggling forsyer to adopt parents!:)

  4. Avatar Jase says:

    We FINALLY received our money (with interest) on July 5th! Just had to wait it out.

  5. Avatar Jase says:

    I called back and spoke with someone else. Apparently the first person reversed the date. Our case closed on the 21st and we should get our money between 2 to 4 weeks! Finally! Those of you who’ve had your case close, what is the general time it takes to be deposited?

  6. Avatar Jase says:

    Well, I called this morning and they told me that our case was closed in our favor on the 12th, but that there is no word on the release date. Why? You’d think they’d want to get it out since they have to pay interest. The funny thing was I called last Monday and they told me they were working on “those dates”, which I assume was the date I had sent the documents in that they had asked for. Who knows when they will get us the money…soon I hope!

  7. Avatar Jase says:

    Still waiting! Very frustrating. No one wants to help at all. So, I wait!

  8. Avatar Jase says:

    Well, we filed back on Feb. 17…resubmitted documents on 4/12, got a letter last week stating they received my documentation on 4/12 and that we should give them until 6/26.
    I tried to get a tax advocate and they told me that we didn’t have an emergency…me being out of work for a year with no unemployment didn’t constitute an emergency!
    This is very discouraging…

  9. Avatar Jase says:

    We faxed our information to them. Ours is a special needs adoption from foster care. I’ll check with them this week to make sure things are going well. When I had called a tax advocate before they told me you have to have proof that you are about to lose your home, can’t pay medical bills, or about to lose your vehicle before they will get involved. Is this true?

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Jase, there seems to be a fair amount of leeway given tax advocates in determining what is considered “significant hardship”. I suggest calling again and if you are lucky you will get to speak with a different advocate and maybe they will deem your situation as hardship enough for them to get involved.

  10. Avatar Jase says:

    I just received my letter requesting more information as well. It did have the bright pink slip inside for me to attach to the top of my information. All they asked for was a copy of birth certificates and social security cards. We don’t even have they new BC’s yet. No no SS card either. I called an examiner and he said send what I have with a letter of explanation. Then he asked about the adoption decree and I told him I sent it in already. He told me to send everything.
    They aren’t allowed to send out information from one location to another.
    So, I will hit the fax machine tomorrow and send everything with my SS number on every page!

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Jase, I can’t remember if your adoption was a special needs adoption from foster care. If not, make sure to include proof of payment for the expenses you are claiming.

  11. Avatar jackie says:

    Dawn Hi im curious about #396 & 427 did i read that right?they received the return on 2-27-2012? and the return is being processed already?I think thats faster than most. Do you think because mine was an amended return its going to take longer? mine was receive on 2-22-2012 and havent begin to be processed.How long before I can get a advocate.LoL.Dawn and i have a question when i mailed my amended return I didnt send the amended years 08 and 09. 08 was the year my adoption became final. She amended them in order to get the credit for 2010. but after reading some of the post on this website I went back and sent 08 and09 certified which they have received already because ive got the green card back already. do you think they will be confused or should i have waited until they asked for 08 and09? Find time to ask now huh.

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      As a general rule, we recommend waiting until they ask for information until you send it. Then, send exactly what they are asking for following the tips on our Top Ten Tips for Avoiding Delays When Filing for the Adoption Tax Credit . And yes, some people are reporting fast processing.

  12. Avatar Ethiopian Woman says:

    Excellent web site. Plenty of helpful information here. I am sending it to several friends ans additionally sharing in delicious. And obviously, thank you to your effort!

  13. Avatar Jase says:

    I spoke with a tax advocate today. She told me that being out of a job for a year, with no unemployment is not a hardship. She couldn’t help me. I was called back by a tax advocate from my state and they said my return is being examined. I was given a phone number and called it. The man I spoke with there said my return is being examined but no letters have been sent out at this time. He did give me a number to fax my information which I had already sent. That’s where we stand right now. I’ll keep updating.

  14. Avatar Tim says:

    Well, I am not counting on any proposed dates or even checking the website. When it gets here,it gets here. If the IRS needs additional information, then I will make sure I have proper documentation and proof of receipt. God knows what my family needs and He has provided above and beyond. My trust is in him, not the IRS. I do understand the situations other families are in, and the government needs to be fair about their information. Leading people on and then making resend information makes no sense. I wonder if anyone knows a family that didn’t get the run around.

  15. Avatar jackie says:

    Hi i spoke with the irs on yesterday and i was told that they received my amended return on 2-22-2012 and it had been assigned to someone but whomever it was assigned to havent begin to process it.I think thats sad.But im going to be patient. maybe i will here something in a couple of months.

  16. Avatar Jase says:

    I still haven’t received a letter. WMR still saying expect refund by 4/17. I try to talk to someone today and kept getting automated messages as if I were checking WMR. I called a tax advocate line to see if they can help, but I haven’t heard back from them yet. I’ll keep everyone posted as to what we hear.
    If the wait is going to be 14 weeks, then they need to put that date instead of 4/17, 4/10 or 4/24.

  17. Avatar jackie says:

    Hi everyone I talked with someone at the irs today. I guess im at the bottom of this long ride with the irs. I adopted in 08 so h&r block amended my 2010 taxes and we didnt send the 08 and 09 amended return so i was told by them that i needed to amend those two years before i could do a carryforward in 2010. I wish i would have know that a month ago.

  18. Avatar Jase says:

    Hey guys. My wife and I adopted 3 children from foster care. They are special needs because of their age and they are a large sibling group. We filed our taxes on Feb. 17. Have not received anything yet. I do know that according to the IRS website it says we should have our refund by April 24th. This has changed from April 10 and 17. It says due to processing delays, but I’m not sure if that’s the case. Anyone else had that same message?

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Jase, lots of folks are getting that message and hearing the April 24th date. I suspect it’s the default message and date being used by the IRS. Nothing to do now, but wait and see if they go ahead and process or send your return for audit. Let us know what you hear. If you haven’t already done so, post this info and keep tabs on what’s happening to others, over at the Creating a Family Facebook Support Group.

  19. In case you haven’t seen it, I posted a blog about The Future of the Adoption Tax Credit for 2012, 2013, and beyond. I wonder what all the problems the IRS has had with processing this credit will have on the soon to be initiated debates on continuing the credit and continuing to make it refundable.

  20. Avatar Debbie Cooper says:

    We filed our taxes in March, got audited and sent in all required paperwork by May and received our refund via direct deposit in August.

  21. Avatar BooBoo Justthemomforthejob says:

    We have gotten ours but only after contacting our State Rep. and having him launch a Congressional Inquiry with the IRS. Once we did that, things moved QUICKLY and we got all of our money.

  22. Avatar Dawn says:

    have been making inquiries about whether the IRS has been assessing penalties to people who incorrectly filed for the Adoption Tax Credit and were denied. We (Creating a Family) has heard from a few people, but the professionals I’ve contacted have heard of very few. Usually the adoption tax credit claims that are being rejected are because the tax payers made a mistake and were ineligible for the credit and they were not paid the money. In this case, there should be no penalty. If it is considered tax fraud, then you can be charged a penalty. If you have been charged a penalty even after you have explained the mistake, you will likely need to hire a tax attorney to fight it.

  23. Avatar John says:

    @Jerry: “….got a letter that they disallowed our adoption credit and then to rub salt into the wound, charged us a $2500 penalty for substantial underpayment and adequate disclosure”

    Exact same thing just happened with my wife and I after sending them all required adoption paperwork. Not looking good!

  24. Avatar Russ says:

    We adopted two American special needs children in 2010. We are thankful for the refundable credit. My question is: Are we also entitled to an exclusion from income of the $13,170 regardless of proven adoption costs expended?

  25. Avatar Jen Gee says:

    “Just be patient” and “it all works out” are not helpful comments, and not necessarily true. Maybe you missed the news article about the families who did get screwed out of refunds by the IRS this year. And maybe you aren’t one of the families who took out huge adoption loans and counts on this money to pay them off. The unnecessary delay has last months. It’s not like the IRS didn’t know this was going to happen. They should have been prepared to handle this, and clearly they weren’t — and it’s the families paying the price.

  26. Avatar Jennifer Meininger says:

    According to their instructions on the 8839 form – I sent the appropriate documents. However I still got my delay letter today. Sigh.

  27. Avatar Chrissy Jensen says:

    Question…if the refundable credit is in place till Dec.’11…if an adoption is completed IN 2011, can you claim it in Feb for your 2011 taxes if it expires?

  28. Avatar Anonymous says:

    I actually filed an Amended return for 2011 in 2013 and IRS received it on Apr 1st, 2013. After 12 weeks, my file status says to call them, and when I did, I had to wait 30 minutes or more to talk to someone. It has been 16 weeks and every time I call, I get different information or explanation. It is with the document examination dept., or so they say. I have not received any letter for additional documents yet. I have learned not to count on the refund and will just be greatful when it does.

  29. Avatar Leland says:

    That is very fascinating, You are an excessively professional blogger.

    I have joined your feed and look ahead to in the hunt for
    more of your magnificent post. Additionally, I have shared
    your web site in my social networks

  30. Avatar Ezekiel says:

    Great blog! Do you have any recommendations for aspiring
    writers? I’m hoping to start my own blog soon but I’m a little lost on everything.
    Would you recommend starting with a free platform like WordPress
    or go for a paid option? There are so many choices out there that I’m totally overwhelmed .. Any tips? Appreciate it!

  31. Avatar Jorge says:

    Reference post 609. Well, the nightmare has started all over again. After receiving my full credit earlier in the year, I got a letter from the IRS in October stating that they were “reviewing” my 2011 tax return. That’s their friendly word for “audit.”

    I had to provide proof that my adopted children were indeed adopted. After all the paperwork I did, and after them sitting on my return for 3 months, and after them finally giving me the money I filed for, they now turn around and say I have no proof that the children are my dependents!

    So, I sent in all the paperwork I sent before, plus more “proof” that the children are mine. I sent at least a half inch thick stack of papers.

    I get a letter back saying they are reviewing my case. Another letter says I will hear back sometime in January. I finally get a letter on 12/31/2012 saying they believe the children are my dependents, but they don’t believe they are special needs, and that I owe almost $50,000 which includes a 20 percent penalty!

    Now I’m sending the same documentation AGAIN that shows without any doubt that my children are special needs.

    When does this nightmare end? How do I get the IRS off my back and get them to close the case?

  32. Avatar Anonymous says:

    Hopefully this is it!

  33. Avatar Dave says:

    Well, kids have much awaited stuff they need for medical purposes, we have a little more breathing room, and possibly time away sometime after the kids are more independant, could be some time. Our vehicle got some much needed maintenence, and our newly adopted children got some savings. Seems like a lot, but one can dwindle through it quickly, so I am not planning on wasting anything. Again, thanks for having the site available…it helps.

  34. Avatar Dave says:

    Exactly 1/2 year.

  35. Avatar Dave says:

    Thanks for the site to vent. On this day in 2012, no more waiting, YAYYYYY! Not much in the way of interest, several hundred, (4), but well take it. Not bad for not expecting it in the first place. So five actual postal days to arrive.
    So it was accepted in May and we got it on Nov.23… 28, almost 29 weeks.

  36. Avatar Dave says:

    TA says it takes two weeks to actually make it to your mailbox from the time they mail it. Is it coming from China?

  37. Avatar Dave says:

    Time line: IRS received on 5/7.
    First letter on 10/25, 2nd a week later, and notice to send one week after that, and as long as all goes as planned, received 5 working days later.

  38. Avatar Dave says:

    So it will be mailed tommorow, and prob. be here Wed. next week.

  39. Avatar Dave says:

    First apprvl letter Oct 25, second last wk, now still waiting….but with a light at the end of the tunnel.

  40. Avatar Dave says:

    Ok, so first letter was letter of apprval, 2nd letter says they have updated our 1040 to include the interest, and we will receive it in 2-3 wks, so give it another month.

  41. Avatar Dave says:

    Well, another week and zilch….

  42. Avatar Dave says:

    Well, a letter of approval from the irs, how nice after 6 months. Now instead of give it a month, it’s give it 2 months.

  43. Avatar Dave says:

    One more thing, if I have succesfully submitted all docs, and have done it the right way, then why so long?

  44. Avatar Dave says:

    Course I am reluctant to say anything here, because who knows who is reading this. I dont need it to take another month, I need the funds yesterday,so I can get things back on the road, and to keep a roof over our head, although it needs some work.

  45. Avatar Dave says:

    Apparently the congress persons office was told it was approved but takes weeks to add that into the system file. We will see. Nothing from the IRS as of yet, not a letter, or anything else, just when I call, they have said, give it another month.

  46. Avatar Zeny says:

    We are still waiting for the adoption credit. I file since may 2012. we still havent heard a lettern on june stating that give them 45 days , another letter august 45 days . Irs rep told me they reffer me to another dept. wait 30 days nothing happen.august they send to tax advocate advocate deny because the rep i talk to said we have to be in hardship.called Nov 1 our file was sent to memphis for review . we have to wait 30 days for them to review. I hope we hear from them nov 31.

  47. Avatar Dave says:

    OK officially 6 months, not a word.

  48. Avatar Dave says:

    The TA closed the case. The IRS guy told me they have scanned the documents in the system, and it is in the examiners office, could be another 30 days. That is what I have been told all along, another 30 days. I was also told that since the credit is refundable, that every adoption credit is thrown into the examiners office. I am aware that no-one is above the IRS people, just like FEMA.

  49. Avatar Dave says:

    Hows this post I found on line:
    Yep. I could have told them that without all the research. They have repeatedly denied our claim, even though we’ve sent EVERY required document to them now 4 times, and even tossed in a few extra for good measure. The denial letters we get say “required deficient documentation listed on the next page” and the next page is BLANK (twice now). When I try to read their own form back to them, since they’re asking for things no one in the accounting world or the adoption world has ever heard of, they hang up on me. We’ve now handed it over to the Tax Advocate Service & contacted both our Senators to rattle some cages because we’re sick of 8 months of constant battles. I would still love to sugar up my adopted son & let him terrorize their offices for a couple hours – I guarantee they’ll send the refund instantly!

  50. Avatar Dave says:

    OK, nothing yet, not a letter or any communication since I sent the forms out and they were received on May7.

  51. Avatar Dave says:

    Well, 5 months, and I was told today that since an advocate got involved, it will be thrown into review and take even longer, and more info will be requested, to make it harder, and longer….

  52. Avatar Dave says:

    well, 19 weeks not a word. I called the other day and was told since an advocate is involved, they wont tell me anything, only the advocate.

  53. Avatar Dave says:

    Well, another week, not a word.

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Oh Dave, I have nothing to offer other than to say “hang in there”. Go back and read the comments to this blog, and you’ll see plenty of others who waited and waited, but ultimately received their credit.

  54. Avatar Dave says:

    Thank you Dawn. Still not a word from the irs, only when I ask a question, and then i am told, to wait, and then nothing. I am sure of one thing, if you want something bad enough, youd better do it right, and expect no one to do it for you.

  55. Avatar patience says:

    Hey Everyone!! FYI… and UPDATE::
    cant believe it came, what a loong wait. I also got 1,200 in interest. very nice surprise! all in all it took about 20 weeks. didnt even receive a letter until 3 weeks ago. they said the mail check date was sept 10th. so everything was just a bit misconstrued information. Thankful we FINALLY got it. i guess.. Patience just pay off 🙂 Good luck everyone, have a great day.

  56. Avatar Dave says:

    One more thing. Here is the statement from the IRS web site copied and pasted: “It is necessary for the IRS to review the documents submitted. Normally, for a tax return claiming the adoption credit, it takes about six to eight weeks to get a refund claimed on a complete and accurate paper return, where all required documents are attached”.
    So this is why we begin to see this in weeks, and expect a return sooner than we do. It should read:”up to 6-8 months.”

  57. Avatar Dave says:

    By the way, wheres my refund, and direct deposit, never works with adoption credits.

  58. Avatar Dave says:

    Cass, its been 6 months, so congrats!

  59. Avatar cass says:

    @dave and dawn thank you @dave yes indeed it was exactly 6months getting a T A really helps a lot so happy i can take my kids to disney world and i just adopted my little son he is 9 years old had him since he was 3 so disney world would be a really nice treat and goodluck to those that are still waiting and i got check they didnt deposit.

  60. Avatar Dave says:

    TA called said they can request the credit to be processed but it can then be thrown into review.

  61. Avatar Dave says:

    By the way I contacted my congressperson today and they are acting as a TA. The more someone in authority sees this crime the better. Yeah I call it a crime for the IRS to b in such a position. Also cass, did they include any kind of interest?

  62. Avatar patience says:

    Update… well i Finally got my one and only letter in this ordeal and it says they approved the refund. I called for payment date and they said it was being sent on Sept 10th. OMGosh what a HUGE waiting period, especially without any news. This process took about 20 weeks. good news it is on its way.. and soon the “check will be in the mail”. 🙂

  63. Avatar Dave says:

    Easten time is 651am

  64. Avatar Dave says:

    15 weeks in just a few dys and nothing. I talked to someone who said everything is ok and just waiting to be completed and they are very busy(backlogged. After a few questions, I was referred to a TA and TA should be contacting me in a week. Another week, another month, another year. Oh well.

  65. Avatar Dave says:

    Dont forget to let us know when you actually get it, would be nice to hear someone was actually successful.

  66. Avatar Dave says:

    I have found the commonality in all this. First, let me say that we should not look at this in weeks, but months. If the IRS gets all your stuff on March 1st, then if correct, in all probability, you will see a return in Sept. So 6 months is the wait time, not 12 weeks, 14 or 18 weeks.

  67. Avatar cass says:

    thank you dawn just got letter from irs cnfirmoimng refund and the letter says 6-8 weeks do anyone know how lond it takes after the letter staes 6-8 weeks my ta said she should have a date on 29th

  68. Avatar Dave says:

    It is true then that the IRS web site is very deceiving. To say 8-12 weeks leads one to operate in that deception. Furthermore, when we call the IRS seems they lead you on further by saying something like:WOW, its been that long, well call back in two weeks and we will try to contact the employee working on it, and see whats going on. Leaving one to think that it must be close. When in fact 6 months is the true wait time. Now, prove me wrong!!

  69. Avatar cass says:

    good news my ta called me and said they approve tax refund and they should post it to my account tues or thursday and then she will have a date for me thanks to ta she really looks into the matter and get it done so im just witing for her to call with date should be really soon.

  70. Avatar patience says:

    still have not received Nothing, no letter, no refund,no nothing. They received it April 13th. 2012. They keep saying they are working on it,and it is in review and they will let me know. WOW! really??? geesh! they wondering why i keep calling every week… because i dont hear anything from them and we are going on 17 weeks now. Hope this all works out…dont understand WHY it takes SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO long. They want their money ASAP. by a certain due date, should make it for the adoption credit and all other credits that the IRS pays.. a certain amount of time. 12 weeks TOP and then refund due within 10 days. i think that is fair… 🙂

  71. Avatar cass says:

    hello everyone just a updated they are mailing my check oof today aug31 so will be getting it soon <3

  72. Avatar cass says:

    i talk to ta and she said they were missing one of my kids info and i know i sent in everything i had a cpa do my ammended so i had fax papers over again so now waiting for ta i give me updated . if everything is together how are they losing eveything i think its just another excuse to stall even more.

  73. Avatar Dave says:

    Cass, be sure to put a chunk in a savings of some sort, and enjoy the rest, although I know it goes quick!
    Thanks for being part of the forum!

  74. Avatar Dave says:

    your conclusion is great in theory, hope it happens. Another call yielded it can take another 3 weeks, and at that point we can call back. Seems every thing is completed, but it is not available yet. What does that mean…who knows?

  75. Avatar Dave says:

    OK where is this post being posted. It is August 3, and it is 8:21 Eastern time.

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      We’re on Eastern Time too. It doesn’t always get posted immediately since we have to manually approve each post and we don’t check constantly.

  76. Avatar Dave says:

    Now it will 13 weeks in just a few days, and last time i talked to the irs, they said in a few weeks i can call back and they will question the person working on it. I called a few days ago and this person said they are required to inform me it could be another 30 days before I hear anything. So far the only thing Ive heard is when I called. Are we supposed to get a letter or some official notice of what the plan is going to be, or do we just wait it out and hopefully something will happen within say a year.

  77. Avatar Dave says:

    The interesting thing thing here, I had no idea about the credit until I went to the tax person, so this is a plus. We adopted our first one initially taking him in for a few weeks. We decided on the first day what we wanted to do. We then a year later adopted his bro. Both came from the state.

  78. Avatar Jen says:

    Received call from my tax advocate and our audit is finished. We will receive full amount for 2 children! They do nit have a deposit date for us yet, but hoping it will be soon. I will update when we receive it for those who are trying to get an idea of timelines. Let’s keep it positive her, no one that I know has adopted for any other reason than to grow their families. This is hard for all those who wait.

  79. Avatar Jen says:

    Just to give a conclusion to my refund story, we are getting our full refund plus interest this Friday! From start to finish, our tax advocate took our case and completed it in 3 weeks and refund is coming 1 week later. I was told it will be mailed, but I keep hearing conflicting stories that it could be direct deposited. Either way, I am so grateful for this website for all the information. I can’t even put into words how helpful this information has been.

  80. Avatar cass says:

    i have talk to my advocate she said everthing is in my file i need and she will be getting back to me real soon she couldnt understand why they were taking so long to even send me a letter.@nicole j im not understanding your post we are all on here to support each other not talk bad or negetive we all have been bless to adopt wonderful precious kids and there nothing wrong with wanting this money for vacation or etc im a christian woman and i have faith in God he blessed me with two wonderful kids so please keep the negetivity off here if anything as a faithful worker for God its our duty to pray for one another.

  81. Avatar Jen says:

    Dave, respectfully I have to disagree with your last sentence in post #662. we entered our adoption (a quick international older child adoption) knowing we would qualify for the ATC. It was made into law, there was no reason to think we would wait this long without a reasonable timeline of receiving these funds. Our finances in general as well as my choice to stay home with our chidren for this summer were in anticipation of this refund. Low income individuals who receive more back than they ever paid in taxes are not audited the way we have been. We fulfilled our obligation as tax payers and I would think the IRS would have a better plan this year than they did last year. I am hoping our tax advocate has good news for us this week. I wish you well.

  82. Avatar Dave says:

    I last was told to give it 2 more weeks, then they can question the employee handling the case, but not before then. It takes patience, fortitude, and not jumping the gun here, just keep your paperwork in a safe place, dont spend anything in advance, and remember, GOOD things come to those who wait, so faith is important! The IRS will not send out a check in a few weeks, or months, but look forward to a very long wait, and thank God you are not in a long line at a building, you’d starve to death before they got around to you. The IRS is not a money handout place, and the government doesnt rule our lives and is not the answer to our financial woes(they(we) are in debt), it was never intended to be.

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Dave, I loved your reminder: ” [K]eep your paperwork in a safe place, dont spend anything in advance, and … thank God you are not in a long line at a building… .”

  83. Avatar Patience says:

    UPdate again::::: I’am getting very frustrated now… I called again. WOW what a run around! now they are telling me it is in with the examiner and they still have until sept 7th??? WHAT THE HECK!! they told me it was closed july 10th. then they say it was in THAT dept. now it is with the “other” dept… and to give them more time! The most frustrating thing is… I have not recieved a letter or anything.. so all i have, is to keep calling! why all the different dates of it is closed, 8-12 weeks, plus a additonal 4 weeks, a additional 6 weeks, 8 weeks.. this is ridiculous!. my name is not suiting me right now.. Patience….

  84. Avatar Dave says:

    I call them once a week to hear them say its still in process it could take 14 or more weeks. Seems a never ending black hole and the advocate place seems to think by the time they get in place, i will have a check, so might as well dig in for the long haul.

  85. Avatar cass says:

    i callled today again to check on refund they said that its being review i sent hem off april 2 2012 she said if i dont hear anything or letter by july 28 then call and she made it clear to me not to call until after 28 this is crazy i havent got any letters or anything wow

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Cass, so sorry this is happening to you. Take heart by reading the previous comments that most people eventually get their adoption tax credit with interest.

  86. Avatar cass says:

    thanks dawn thats the good thing about the waiting its the interest.

  87. Avatar Jen says:


    I was told that from the date the examiner receives your file, they have 90-100 days to complete the audit. We got a tax advocate as this wait is causing financial hardship to us. I sent mine off the same day you did and the xaminer got our case June 23rd.

  88. Avatar cass says:

    @jen by getting tax advocate and ststing hardship did you get more answers on whats going on with the taxes when i called tax advocate he directed me back to that main line he wasnt no help.

  89. Avatar Patience says:

    UPDATE:: the case was closed, now it is reopened. I did not get a letter or anything.until they called me.. The IRS said amended returns with the tax credit, Must ALLOW 14 weeks for processing. not the standard 8-12. our 14 weeks wont be up until the 27th of july according to their calculations. she said we should recieve something by then. which doesnt make any sense if it was closed and then a “portion” of it is reopened. and if we dont hear anything by the 27th THEN call back. my referral got denied because it wasnt the 14 weeks allowable for processing.

  90. Avatar nicole j says:

    this site is THE BEST even if im still waiting:)

  91. Avatar nicole j says:

    has anyone received there ammen?de returns within the 45 day letter

  92. Avatar cass says:


    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Cass, many people have received their credit via direct deposit. It is the tax form itself that must be submitted in paper form rather than electronically since you have to include all the documentation.

  93. Avatar Patience says:

    UPDATE:::: well i called again this afternoon, and the lady at the IRS said it closed yesterday the 9th. but no other information was available for at least another week or so. I asked about any letters or anything being sent as i did not recieve one and i keep hearing of people getting one. she said nothing was sent to us during the process. so i’am not sure how to take that or the new info of it being closed? anyone know what that mean?? bad or good? I keep getting different opinions on the refund being direct deposit or paper check. and what is this about interest???

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      The adoption tax credit refund can be direct deposited. Yes, the IRS can pay interest. I believe they pay it if the delay was “their fault”.

  94. Avatar Jen says:

    I sent an amended tax return for the adoption tax credit over 3 months ago. Just spoke with IRS yesterday and it was sent to an examiner June 23rd. I was told to give them 90 days to process this. Does this sound reasonable? That would give them until September 23rd which would make total time from sending it almost 6 months. I asked if they would expedite due to financial hardship and she opened a case with us with an advocate. I would love to hear others experience with an amended tax return when you sent all required documentation. Thanks for this website!

  95. Avatar Patience says:

    I thought the adoption refunds could only be paper checks?? My cpa did a amended tax return for 2010 to only add the adoption of my 2 boys that were family but were in the foster care system and was special needs. I mailed the amended returns and all the approp documents including subsidy agreements, adoption decree’s ETC.. and they were accepted by the IRS on April 18th.2012 and i’m still waiting. i have not gotten a letter or a response, nothing. i started calling a couple weeks ago and they tell me it is still being processed…. i asked if there was any problems and they replied, no.. i’am in the 12th week now and getting very frustrated!!! we wanna go to DISNEYLAND!! lol.. none of us have ever gone, and i thought what a better way to celebrate,with a little of the refund, of course after paying some bills and new uniforms for school for my kids. but we wanna go int he summer and now i’m getting worried… i do want to go while they are out for the summer. 🙁 so my question is… do they direct deposit amended adoption refunds? and what is the average time people are seeing their refunds??? thanks.. i’m glad i stumbled on this website. 🙂 have a great day!

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Patience, if you signed up for direct deposit, the IRS will do that for the Adoption Tax Credit. I’m a little surprised that you have received something from them since it has been 12 weeks. Usually you would have received a letter from the IRS.

  96. Avatar cass says:

    hello im reading post on here about adption credit refund i sent all my info out end of march they are saying that they are reviewing my case and its been assigned to another worker i havent even got and notice in mail you guys talk about tax advocate how do i go about getting one for my case

  97. Avatar Patience says:

    Hello everyone.. a little update. i was very curious about the direct deposit and paper refund questions and answers. So here is what the IRS said to me today.::::
    Current year taxes and adoption credits can recieve the direct deposits. Amended taxes for years previous can ONLY recieve a paper refund. so i hope this helps someone like it did me. anyone know how long it takes to get a paper refund once your case is closed??? thanks 🙂 have a great day

  98. Avatar Jen says:

    Dawn, we have not gotten the tax advocate. The IRS rep on the phone opened a case for us and told us to wait 7 days for a phone call from an advocate. If we don’t hear within 7 days, she gave us a 877 number to call. Is there any difference in how amended cases are handled, or should I still expect the dreaded letter to re-submit all receipts? How does having a tax advocate help the process along?

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      A tax advocate is available if the delay in causing undue financial hardship. There seems to be a great deal of leeway in interpreting what constitutes financial hardship. They act like grease–intervening on your behalf with the bureaucracy. I don’t know if amended taxes are handled differently.

  99. Avatar Sara says:

    update received full atc + interest by direct deposit on 6/27/12 yay!

  100. Avatar Dave says:

    We too adopted 2 in 2011. Sent out amended return and 8839 by itself and have been told “In Process” and it could take 8 to how ever many weeks to file. The IRS received on May 7. So it’s been about 10 weeks.

  101. Avatar cass says:

    i was told someone wasworking on my taxes and i will just have to wait he said its taking much longer because of large refund . theyy are not giving out much info my friend received her check 8 weeks she got letter and then check followed

  102. Avatar Jen says:

    Just an update to post #641. I got an advocate and faxed all documentation yesterday. I was told that I would get a follow up call in 3 weeks to discuss the status or sooner if the case is closed before then. I was impressed by the compassion of this person.

  103. Avatar cass says:

    as im typing im speaking to tax advocate she looking through my files she cant believe i havent even got a letter they had my taxes since april 2 will keep you guys updated @ dawn thank you for your posts been very helpful.

  104. Avatar Jen says:

    Cass, my tax advocate was able to explain in detail where my taxes were currently and how soon (or not) the audit would be completed without them. now, with an advocate they estimate 3 weeks and they will have an answer from the examiner (if they need more time or if my refund will be released). My advocate has been wonderful, even called after I faxed the documents to let me know all pages came through. Please update here, I will also in hopes it helps someone else.

  105. Avatar JJ says:

    Thank you Dawn and thank you for having this wonderful site!

  106. Avatar JJ says:

    I am very happy for those of you that have had a positive outcome with your refunds. After being threatened with possible enormous penalties and interest charges, I have signed a waiver giving up my rights to my refund and they will give me just over $3000 for the adoption credit (2 children). I was told by an IRS auditor that the IRS does not want to give the amount of interest they would have to and are doing all they can to avoid the interest payments. Another auditor verified that my auditor never even evaluated all of my receipts so how did she come up with this offer? Fortunately for those of you that adopted through the state, the IRS cannot threaten you so you will eventually get your full refund. I am so frustrated and sad that auditors have so much power and are not held accountable to anyone. When I asked one of the representatives why is the IRS still holding my basic part of my refund after more than 4 months, he said and I quote, “because they can.” I thank God for my two beautiful boys and can not let this IRS mess eat away at me anymore. Thank you all for letting me vent!! God Bless you and your families:)

  107. Avatar Kara says:

    just wanted to update from post 570. Talked to a lady at the IRS. She informed me that our case closed in our favor on Friday, June 8. She said it would take any where from 2 to 4 weeks to receive our money. I will update once again she the ATC actually is DD into my bank account.

  108. Avatar Sara says:

    Yay! finally talked to my tax advocate on Friday. She said the adoption tax credit had been approved and we should receive our $ in the next 2 weeks, although she was unable to give me a specific date. She stated we will be receiving interest but I am curious if anyone knows how that works if it is interest based monthly or if it is interest based on the whole amount 1x and what the interest rate is? Thanks everyone this has been a great resource and venting page and I really have appreciated being able to come here to find some answers. for those of you who are still waiting to find out about your taxes don’t give up! Sending good thoughts your way 🙂

  109. Avatar Sara says:

    Just a little update. our return was accepted by IRS on June 4th, and our tax advocate called us and let us know funds would be released. Still waiting 🙁 but she did say we would receive close to $200 in interest

  110. Avatar cass says:

    @jen thanks for info now i have to wait 7 days for advocate to call me back i though i was speaing to the advocate i guess not she has to put me through another person .

  111. Avatar Sara says:

    So I sent in my tax return it was received by the IRS on February 2nd. I still have yet to receive my refund. My tax advocate is located in Georgia which is a 6 hr time difference than our time here in Hawaii. My tax advocate has all my paperwork. my case is still being reviewed 6 weeks after i was assigned a tax advocate 🙁 and she says it will be at least another 2 weeks before she hears back from the IRS on the status of my account and only if everything goes well it may take another 3 weeks for my money to be deposited into my acct. that will put me at 11 weeks since I started working with my advocate and around 5 months since the IRS initially received my return. This is not fair to all of us who have adopted children and need the $$ I wish there was a way to hold the IRS responsible for getting these returns out in a timely manner.

  112. Avatar Shay says:


  113. Avatar Jorge says:

    Here is my story, which I hope is encouragement to many: Adopted 3 special needs children (in GA), finalized last half of 2011. Mailed tax return late February, unaware of problems everyone was having.
    My return is complicated regardless of adoption–about 50 pages, including corporate income, personal business income, etc. To make matters worse, we had losses to claim for 2011, so I was already worried about audit.
    Watched the Where’s My Refund site and it soon showed a date of April 17. As that date came near, it changed to April 24.
    I started researching, found this site and others, and got really worried about when/if I would get my refund, which not only was big because of 3 adoptions, but aside from that included our biggest refund to date because of business losses and addition of 3 children.
    On April 24, I got the ‘being processed’ message that everyone else gets, but I did not get any letter from IRS, so I contacted them. All they said is that I should be getting a letter ‘soon’.
    I contacted Tax Advocate on their web site, my congressman, and alerted other congressmen to the delays. By this time I received a letter from IRS saying I needed to wait 45 days for processing. The Tax Advocate called me a few days later and said I had to wait the 45 days before she could do anything. Got a letter from congressman saying same thing, and that he would ‘follow up’.
    I was REALLY worried at this point because of how complicated my return was, and the bad stories of people having to wait up to a year for 2010 adoption filings.
    However, I checked my bank account today for other reasons (only about 40 days in 45 day period), and there is a pending transaction for the full amount I claimed. I am still in shock but wanted to share good news to all.
    I don’t think Tax Advocate or congressman helped, but who can say? Seems like just waiting was what it took. I did not use CPA, but do all taxes myself with help of TurboTax online and TurboTax Business.
    I give thanks to God for helping us through this situation, and I wish you all blessings in getting your money in timely fashion.

  114. Avatar Shay says:


  115. Avatar sherry says:

    I was wondering has anyone sent their ammended ATC in & got them back yet ? I sent my ATC paper work off on 2-9-12 . I haven’t received a letter or notice about nothing . I am still waiting !

  116. Avatar temeka says:


    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Temeka, I don’t really know, but I think you might have a better chance working with your creditor/landlord and explaining that you have the check coming on June 1st. The problem seems to me that you might well be in this same situation at the end of the next month. Is there some type of organization near you that helps people develop a workable budget or help with getting a job (you may already have a job, so this may not be necessary).

  117. Avatar pamela says:

    It is my understanding the qualifcations for special needs is to have been in the foster care system. Also their is an agreement that is signed by the county and yourself regarding your subsidy. The higher amount paid per day usually the higher the needs are for the child. I personelly have never read anything regarding race as being special needs. Hope you get it all resolved for your tax credit #593

  118. Avatar Kevin S says:

    My wife and I adopted to black twins domestically in Florida, and are claiming both boys under special needs. One of Florida definition of special needs is any black or bi-racial child, or siblings, or a child adopted older than 8. After delay, after delay we received a letter from the tax examiner disallowing our tax credit. I finally was able to speak to the examiner…She stated, she does not care what the state of Florida states they are special needs if the kids are black, because she’s black and she’s not a special need. Very stressful situation. We are waiting to hear back from the adovact and we plan on filing an appeal. We went from having a 26k tax credit to now oweing the IRS almost 6k. Can anyone give any suggestions or advice?

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Kevin, we have addressed extensively on our radio shows what is considered as a Special Need Adoption for the Adoption Tax Credit.
      **The Feb 29, 2012 Creating a Family show: The Refundable Adoption Tax Credit for 2011 and 2012 Taxes
      **The Dec 14, 2011 Creating a Family show: Adoption Tax Credit for 2011 and 2012

      In short, altho I am not a tax expert, to qualify for SN Adoption Tax Credit your child must have been adopted from foster care and be receiving a monthly subsidy. This subsidy agreement must be submitted as proof of special need. Domestic adoptions not from foster care and international adoptions do not qualify. At least this is my understanding.

  119. Avatar SHAE says:


  120. Avatar Shay says:

    Is it normal for the IRS to send a notice out when the case is close or I would have to keep checking the WMR?

  121. Avatar temeka says:

    what day of the week do the irs mails out checks

  122. Avatar pamela says:

    thank-you Jennifer#588 for the update on the posting of review..doesnt do much good without the updates being posted…apparently.

  123. Avatar pamela says: i got confirmation that irs recieved my fax on may 10th..i was told i would be notified from irs in the next 45 days..called a day later talked with irs and was told they are working on my case now and i should be getting a informal letter within the next 30 in one day according to irs i cut 15 days makes me want to call again today maybe i will shave another 15 days off..wouldnt that be something. and what is this informal letter in 30 days mean? they have recieved all of my information regarding adoption (special needs)..anybody recieved a letter after they have recieved the documentation?

  124. Avatar temeka says:

    yes I got a letter saying my case was closed on may 7 and still have not got my check.

  125. Avatar SHAE says:


  126. Avatar Jennifer says:

    #555-Received the direct deposit today, however the WMR site has not ever updated. It still says we are under review, so I would not rely on that. My best advise would be to call the number on your letter and hope to get a nice person that will take care of it for you. I did not wait the 45 days before calling. Good luck to all!

  127. Avatar temeka says:

    well can someone tell me what e freeze is our adoption tax credit was approve on may 7 2012 ta is no help everytime she calls she always says that they don’t have a check date I have called the irs and they are telling me to contact tax advocate I am having such a hardship my water is off my house is in repossion and it like she don’t even care can you tell where I can get some help I have called everyday but it is the same thing ta will not return my call. I am afraid if things go far we will lose everything and my lights are sch to be cut off on friday can someone please tell me what to do ta stated that the check is suppose to go out on 05/25/12 but she said that last week too and nothing.

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Temeka, I’m so sorry you are having such problems. I can’t offer you much advice, other than wait until May 25 as your Tax Advocate is telling you. Can you negotiate with your bill collectors? Hang in there!

  128. Avatar pamela says:

    it is great to have the support of this website nice to know their are so many with the same irs time line…my story is the same first letter wait 45 days dont need any information from you…second letter need more information…faxed same day..and mailed them too…just in case..called 2 days later got confirmation the faxed was recieved and told i would hear something in the next 45 days…have a sister who adopted from same special needs family and recieved hers within 30 days no questions asked…and sent her return a month after i did..amazing how random some are under review..and others get their returns..crazy! i am being patient, it is something i know i need to work on however it would be nice to not have it on my brain daily…just waiting..and waiting.

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Pamela, best we can tell, and we’ve tried to discern a pattern, is that it is completely random who gets selected for audit. It looks like the percentage will be similar to last year-about 60-70% will be audited.

  129. Avatar Renee Smith says:

    @Tameka and Shay: our check was released on a Wed., but my sisters was a Thursday and my oldest daughters was a Fri, so I think they must release all week long. Shay – They closed our case on Monday May 7th and deposited our money on May 15th. We never received a notice via mail.

  130. Avatar Shay says:

    THANKS RENEE… CONGRAT!!!! Enjoy it all….

  131. Avatar Renee Smith says:

    If the TA tells you that you do not qualify PLEASE fax the form in. I also was told no hardship so I faxed my request in and had a call the very next morning…I will continue to pray for you all to receive your refund and for someone in our government to step up to the plate and handle this mess…

  132. Avatar Shay says:

    Thank Dawn…@ Renee Im a also happy things r working in UR favor…

  133. Avatar elisa says:

    Same thing with us. Filed end of January and they accepted it Feb. 6th. Got a letter stating it was in review and have to wait 45 days until we contact them. I can call again Thursday. I have called several times but they keep telling me to wait until the 45 days. Tax advocate said we can only get help if we have a serious financial problem, which is all relative I guess. We really need this money to get caught up on bills, get new tires, etc. Praying it will come soon. Praying, praying, praying!

  134. Avatar ak says:

    So if our ta said she gave a deadline of today should I expect the wmr or online status to change today if it’s going ahead?

  135. Avatar JJ says:

    PJ, I signed your petition, I’m also asking everyone I know to sign-we need lots of signatures:)

    Today the wmr site says We have received your tax return and it is being reviewed. For more information, please continue. Please read the following information related to your tax situation: Tax Topic 151, Your Appeal Rights

    Then it says Please mention reference number 1241 to the IRS Customer Service Representative.

    Has anyone else received this? I can’t figure out what this mean!


  136. Avatar CC says:

    Well the WMR finally updated on 4/13/12 and it said that my return is being reviewed and I will be receiving a letter requesting more information and to send it in within 30 days. Well I received that letter two weeks ago and my advocate scanned them everything and they said my case was closed on 4/10/12 in my favor and it takes two weeks to process. I am hoping that the WMR is just updating slowly and this means that they are processing my check because I have not received any further letters from them and shouldnt. This is just all too stressful. Freaky Friday the 13th…uuugghhh!!!!!

  137. Avatar JJ says:

    For many weeks the wmr site said April 10 dd, now it says, “Your tax return has been received and is being processed.” Could this possibly be a good thing or just another delay message? Also, how would I know if they accepted my expenses or not? thank you:)

    I have learned (after the fact) that I could have received help in adopting my grandchildren through the state of Florida, I hope other grandparents can learn this information so they may get assistance.

  138. Avatar Anonymous says:

    WMR site has said April 10 for weeks, today it says, “Your tax return has been received and is being processed. ” What does this mean? I have been waiting forever for the audit to get done! Should I be excited or is this just another delay message? Also, how can I find out if they are processing it for the full amount or refused my expenses? Thank you:)

  139. Avatar Steven Rush says:

    We sent our return in by mail on Jan. 18th. We sent all adoption and subsidy paperwork in with the return. We recieved a letter on march 12th that our return is being reviewed. No further documentation was needed. The return cleared was released for deposit on april 5th. It is april 13th now. Still no update on WMR site. Waiting is not fun lol. Irs is saying it will be another 2-4 weeks before the computer system will schedule a deposit. Is it standard that it takes that long after being released from review?

  140. Avatar Chris Carr says:

    Proposing…not posing.

  141. Avatar Chris Carr says:

    Hello all. Though we’re still waiting for our ATC, we had the chance to meet with Bruce Braley yesterday and discuss the importance of renewing this legislation. He is posing to make it permanent and permanently refundable! So check out his site ( and contact your local Congressman and ask for his/her support.
    FYI, though Braley is not my Representatvie, I have contacted Rep. Bobby Schilling (my rep.) to ask for his support. I also asked his office to contact the IRS about the unacceptably lengthy delay in receiving my ATC. We’ll see what happens.

    Please contact your congressman and ask the same of your families and friends!


  142. Avatar Anonymous says:

    We sent our return in on Feb 1st. It took about a month to show up on WMR. The first date was 04/20, the next day it changed to 03/27, about 1 week later it changed to 05/01, about 1 week later it changed to 04/10. On 04/10 it changed to no info. I got a review letter in the mail that same day that had a notice date of 04/16 and says to wait 45 days. On 04/11 WMR changed to received and processing. I am really frustrated about all of this. We are used to getting our refund within the first 2 weeks of Feb. and did not plan for this unexpected delay. The adoption credit will help our family financially, but I really need the regular portion of my refund. The IRS is causing a financial hardship to my family, and I am sure this was not the intention of this credit that was granted to families who chose to adopt children with special needs.

  143. Avatar CC says:

    Susan I would call back again….I had no problem getting an advocate and never had to prove what I told her even though it was the truth. I think its the luck of the draw with who answers the phone and who you are assigned to and it shouldnt be that way. Tell them you mailed it in January if you did, because if they received it on 2/17/12 that doesnt mean that was the date they enetered it into the computer. The lady tried to deny me at first that answered the phone but I just started sounding sad and just kept talking and she was like ok. Hopefully you end up getting someone else that will help you…

  144. Avatar Ryan Maher says:

    We sent our return in on Feb 5th but according to the IRS they didn’t recieve until March 7th. It was assigned a date of on or before April 10th. On April 9th we received the review letter. The best part is that it is a general review so they are holding the whole refund not just the adoption credit portion. Get to wait another 45 days before hearing back.

  145. Avatar CC says:

    JJ the WMR said the same thing to me about being in review and that they was sending me a letter, which they already did weeks before, and it had the reference to the Tax Topic 151 but not the reference #1241….never seen that before…..that WMR just confuses us and the customer service for the IRS doesnt have updated info either because they told my case was still open when the examiner and my advocate both said it was closed in my favor and being processed…

  146. Avatar PJ says:

    Once your case is closed it does not take as long as they tell you it will take. WMR was correct within a few days after our case was closed saying we would get refund DD… 4-11 and we did.

  147. Avatar PJ says:

    Oh yes JJ- Please sign the petition.

    We got our DD on April 11th.

    Mailed return to Kansas City, Mo end on January

    March 1st our return arrived in Philadelphia, PA for review.

    March 10th we got 1st letter saying do nothing.

    March 20th we got 2nd letter saying send in everything again…I faxed everything that same day.

    March 28th we got a TA.

    April 2nd they closed our case in our favor.

    April 11th we got the DD.

    I really hope the process speeds up for everyone still awaiting their tax refunds.

  148. Avatar Chris B. says:

    Hello all. Let me start by saying… WOW. What a nightmare. I too am an adoptive parent of two special little girls. One adoption was complete in 2009. We amended our 2009 and 2010 taxes last year and received the refund after about 4 months. This year we filed for the credit of our second daughter (adoption in 2011) on the 1st of March. Same letter and WMR really annoying. Trying to be patient, but the lack of progress I have seen on all the posts here is discouraging. I haven’t called an advocate because I won’t qualify for assistance (no hardship)and I can’t call a North Carolina Rep because I am not a resident (I’m active duty Air Force) and if you can’t vote for them they won’t help you. So… I will patiently sit here and wait and enjoy all the success you all are having and wish for the best for the ones who are waiting as I am. Good luck to all and God bless this great country!

  149. Avatar Renee Smith says:

    Melinda – I am a dork and was seeing what I wanted to see instead of what you actually put! I was thinking SS#’s and you obviously meant post #’s. I am so sorry…but I had to chuckle a bit at my incredible stupidity…
    I have faxed EVERYTHING and I mean EVERYTHING to our advocate and am awaiting a response…46 pages worth of proof. Now lets see what they have to say as I sent her EXACTLY what I sent them…

    Please please see PJ’s link above and lets help change the future for all adoptive families by sending a message to the IRS via the petition!!

  150. Avatar CC says:

    Melinda I asked my advocate about the interest and she said if my return wasnt back to me by June then they would have owed me interest. They pay interest to the ones who ATC is still being upheld that filed for it awhile ago. Another misinformation given to me by the IRS. I hope it does come sooner than later. I checked the WMR and it still says the same thing it has been saying for a month now. I will have it by 4/17/12 I hope this is true. My advocate did say that they have a new system now so the returns are being processed sooner. Crossing my fingers….

  151. Avatar Kara says:

    My origianl post is 385…. well we did receive our later on March 31 that was postdated to April 5 that stated our taxes were under review and that nothing was being required of us at this time and that it would take up to 45 days to finish the review. I decided to call the IRS for the first time today. The gentleman was quite nice. He informed me that the letter was a standard letter issued of all returns that were being reviewed. I asked why it took 45 days to review my tax information. He said that letter is sent along with several other out and that the person reviewing has 45 days to review all of those and that it could take less time depending where mine is in the stack. We did also receive our portion that was not our ATC. I’m glad to see some are receiving the ATC. I hope that the system is speeding up some what. Will keep everyone updated. Thanks.

  152. Avatar Susan says:

    How are you all getting through with a tax advocate case number? I have called 3 times and explained the urgency of needing a TA but each time I have been denied and told I need to give the IRS the 60 days indicdated on the letter before calling back. We adopted our 2 special needs boys via fostercare in April 2011. Our taxes were received on 2/17/12, we received a letter dated 3/30/12 not requesting any additional information. The WMR date continues to say 4/17/12. I have contacted the IRS several times just to follow up on the status of our refund and received the same answers which is that our return is on hold and we will either receive our refund or hear back from the IRS by 60 days. We are a one income home and like all of you, we could really use this refund to help pay our bills. I suppose we just have to keep waiting. Any suggestions are welcomed..

  153. Avatar temeka says:

    what do moderation means

  154. Avatar temeka says:

    has anyone received their amendment return for 2011 adoption tax credit if so how long did it take

  155. Avatar temeka says:

    how do you joined this group

  156. Avatar Harold says:

    We just received a call from our TA today and she said they are going to release our whole ARC and we should get it by May the 4th. So keep your hopes up everyone. It will all work out in the end. Good luck all.

  157. Avatar melinda says:



  158. Avatar anonymous says:

    @ Dawn let’s hope that’s the case because we are going on vacation and hope it all happens before then!

  159. Avatar CC says:

    hello…i received my portion of the return and they are sending my ATC on 4/27/12…my tax advocate closed my case…so happy!!!

  160. Avatar Anonymous says:

    just spoke with a helpful person at irs. No letters are scheduled to go out to us and ouor 45 days letter is up friday. There are making sure nothing is owed from previous years ( WE KNOW NOTHING IS)and hopefully we get some good news friday. Also we got assigned a case # and should hear from an advocate by May 2. From when an advocate is assigned to getting your money released how long does that generally take?

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Anonymous, that totally depends on what the advocate finds, why the IRS is reviewing, what they are finding, etc. In your case it sounds like there is nothing to hold it up,and in those cases,weare hearing that the checks are being deposited or sent withing a few weeks.

  161. Avatar melinda says:

    annonomous- ours said that for about 3 weeks. don’t know if it meant anything or not. who know’s.

    steven. the irs told me the same thing, 2-4 weeks to get the funds deposited. after they closed we had it the following week. so you might not have to wait that long.
    for us the wmr date was correct. check that and see what it says.

    good luck to you all.

  162. Avatar sherry says:

    I call for TA on 4-11-12 & the advocate called back on 4-16-12 to here my case then she said she did’nt need any info from me ,she had got it already. The advocate said she was callin back on Monday 4-30-12. How long does it take to get your atc after you have talked with the advocate?

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Sherry, how long it takes to get your refund with adoption tax credit after getting a tax advocate totally depends on what the advocate finds, why the IRS is reviewing, what they are finding, etc. An advocate can not do the audit or erase a problem. They can however cut through red tape and that is a huge help.

  163. Avatar Kara says:

    I am once again updating from my previous posts #385 and # 493…On Saturdy 4/14 we received an additional letter from the IRS requesting the additional information. I took everything straight to our tax preparer on Monday, 4/16. They put all requested documentation (offical decree of adoption with stamp, subsidy assistance form, and special needs form) with the cover sheet and wrote the social security numbers on each page and faxed them to the IRS….Hopefully this long drawn out process is coming to an end for us. I will update when anything changes. Thanks.

  164. Avatar Renee Smith says:

    Update: I sent everything to my tax advocate last week. Yesterday she called me and requested that I send copies of our W-2’s, copies of our babygirls new ss cards, copies of the new birth certificates, and signed copies of our returns. (we signed the original when we sent it in but did not sign the copy we were given by H&R Block). She said she is working our return and will update asap. She is soooo nice and I really think she is working for us. There is hope folks. Just a note: We had NO luck calling the tax advocate but when I printed and faxed a request it took one day for them to accept our case and assign an advocate…

  165. Avatar kluv says:

    I also am very stressed out over this atc.I went to H&R block to do my 2001 taxes for them to tell me i didn’t qualify because of it being a relative adoption.So i just blew it off but it just kept bothering.So for my 2012 taxes i asked again about it and they kept me at there office for 2 hours looking in all there books to see why i didn’t qualify.H&R block made the mistake by telling me that cause they couldn’t find no then that said different.So they figured they wouldn’t charge me to prepare the 1040x amended.So i mailed out all paper work certified mail Jan.26th which they said they received the 30th.I called once a week starting march 12th for updates and just keep hearing its being processed.Finally by April 13th got got the sweetest lady who gave me more info then ive ever got,and she said it should of been done.So she helped me right over the phone fill out papers for an advocate.She said someone would contact me with in 5-7 business days.Well i finally got the call today from my advocate and he said they have all paper work they need and it would be 45 days,but he would be calling me back on may 4th hopefully with a date for me.This my first going through all this and i dont think i want to do it again just to stressful.

  166. Avatar Renee Smith says:

    CC – I looked up 1241 for you…

    1241 Paper return received more than 6 weeks ago; -E Freeze; in review, notice for additional information will be received IRM, -E Freeze

    I would call so you can find out what information they are requesting.

  167. Avatar Melonie says:

    I received a letter yesterday stating they have made changes to my 2011 form and I should have my refund within 2-3 weeks. When I go to the WMR website, their is no information posted. They post dated the letter April 30th. Is this a good or bad sign?

  168. Avatar CC says:

    Well folks the WMR is slowly updating again and I received this long drawn out explanation from it which included the reference ID number 1241. I was told to ingnore this message because my case is closed. I didnt choose direct deposit I chose to haver a paper check. They are releasing my portion of the return on 4/20/12 into the mail and my ATC will be done procesing on 4/24/12 and my advocate will be calling me on 4/25/12 to give me that release date. I guess the WMR is updating as my return is processing. They said my case is closed I was allowed the credit for each child I adopted and not to have any worries. The WMR can cause my stress so if you have an advocate talk to them because they I have the info first hand….I will keep you guys posted on when I get my money.

  169. Avatar Chad says:

    We got a tax advocate on Friday. Once again, paperwork we already sent was “lost.” Seriously??? They dealt with our tax guy today. WMR updated to say that we will get out refund on wednesday. Wow… that was quick.

    I would however encourage everyone to keep feeding information to your elected officials. Sen. Grassley’s office(Go Iowa) has been nothing but helpful but they need to know that this sort of silliness needs to end. If the IRS isn’t equipped to deal with these returns and with the fraud perpetrated by some then they need to get equipped.

  170. Avatar kluv says:

    update from#515.Well TA called and no then new he will call again next Fri. I still have no date in sight and i have been waiting since end of Jan.This is so irritating!

  171. Avatar Susan says:

    @James, if you contact Senator Grassley’s office ask to speak with Kay. She was the one who called the TA for us on Friday and on Monday the WMR had updated and our ATC was deposited today (Wednesday). Kay was awesome and was eager to help. her number is 563-323-7882. We are so very thankful and urge you all (along with @Renee Smith) to contact your state reps, our tax dollars pay for their salaries. Good luck and God Bless!

  172. Avatar JACKIE says:

    Hello everyone the IRS received my amended return on the 2-21-2012 and i was given a date today that my refund will be mailed to me.thank GOD my wait will be over soon and to all the rest that is still waiting do not give up your time is coming.

  173. Avatar Chad says:

    Finally, we got a tax advocate. It was only after we contacted our Senator and their office called that we got an advocate. Guess what, all the documentation that we sent needs to be resubmitted.

    I hate to say it but there’s been so many cases just like ours that this has to be more than a random pattern. Things should go quick now.

    I’m thankful for Senator Grassley’s office but I’m going to press them to ask questions as to why this silliness is so widespread.

  174. Avatar CC says:

    Thanks Renee for looking up the info…this adoption credit is so confusing but we are being educated. I think I am qualified now to prepare people’s taxes for the adoption credit, this website is wonderful and I have been telling other adoptive parents who are having issues about it. It feels good to know you are not alone and have a safe environment to vent. If it wasnt for this website I would not be receiving my money so soon, I would still be fighting for it and misled….Thanks Dawn!!!

  175. Avatar JJ says:

    Today I received a notice from the IRS auditor with a bill (penalty for inaccurate tax return) for almost $4000. She is not accepting my receipts-including financial statements from the attorney. I have sent in 175 pages and the only ones that she said she could read, she is not accepting. I give up, if the IRS needs the money so bad that they want to charge me for filing for a refund, they can keep my refund. I have spent more hours than I can count and money that I could not afford to keep sending them information. I hope all of you have better luck than I. At least I have my two beautiful boys:)

  176. Avatar ak says:

    if we have a tax advocate now should we not contact the irs directly and just wait on our advocate to respond?

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      ak,in my opinion, if you are working with a tax advocate, you should wait and give the advocate time to work with the IRS auditors. They are your best bet for speeding up the process.

  177. Avatar Kara says:

    Hi All…Just wanted to give an update from my previous posts of #385, # 493, #512…We received a letter on May 04, stating they had received all the requested materials on April 17 and that they will have a decision made by June 30. Isn’t this longer than the 45 days that they are allowed to review…I counted and I shoud have a decision by June 02. I believe I have been extremely patient with the IRS. I have been waiting since February 6 for my refund. I submitted all documents with my original tax filing and then resubmitted when asked immediately. I does not take 5 minutes to review the documentation submitted to see all is in order. My patience is wearing thin at this point and I think I will request and TA on June 03. Glad to hear that others are now receiving their ATC.

  178. Avatar Ak says:

    @ Dawn regarding post 520 4-6 months from the date it was mailed or from the date they claim to receive it two weeks later, even though it was sent certified? Do we really have to wait until the 45 day letter runs out to get a tax advocate? Once a tax advocate agrees to take your case how long does that process generally take. It’s a simple return no write offs but two kids adopted, seriously how hard could the refund/ audit be. We just got their birth certificates right before we filed Feb 1 but we never changed their socials because we were waiting for this tax stuff to go through. Are they going to make us do that first. We want to change their number and not just their name on their social and that’s why we waited aside from the fact that we didn’t get the birth certificates until just before filing.

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Ak, you can try for a tax advocate now, but I doubt you’ll be successful. They want to allow the normal timing to transpire before they get involved. Good luck.

  179. Avatar Susan says:

    Well 4/17/12 has come and gone and the WMR status was changed to “we have received your return and it is being processed” with no date in sight! I have called the TAS phone number twice this week and can’t seem to get passed the intake worker. I have called the IRS and our account hasn’t been touched since the 4464C letter was sent to us (dated 3/30/12) and possibly a 3rd party, although two different IRS workers reported that the letter was just sent to us. I am not sure what 3rd party they would send it to since we adopted via the state of Arizona. I called the superior court and state subsidy offices and both said they are unable to release that information and have not done so. I have asked if we could send our information again and was advised not to do so until/unless the IRS sends us another letter requesting more information. So we wait…until after May30th to either receive our return, receive a letter requesting more information or if neither of those two things occur, we qualify for a TA. Has anyone who has NOT used a TA received their ATC? We adopted our two boys via Arizona foster care system in April 2011, both boys are special needs due to being state adoptions. It should be easy peasy!

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Susan, I know this won’t make you feel any better, but yes, some people have received their refund with their adoption tax credit. Usually these are the folks that were fortunate to escape the audit process. If this year follows last year, around 70% of the return claiming the adoption tax credit will be audited, and the vast majority of those will ultimately receive the full credit.

  180. Avatar Susan says:

    Great news!!! We contacted Senator Charles Grassley, our state senator and after signing a release for them to speak with the TAS, we were able to get an open case. Hooray!! Senator Grassley’s office contacted me today and explained that the TA needed us to resubmit all our information as well as complete a 1040X amended tax return form. Hopefully this will move things along quickly and we will get our full tax credit in a few weeks!!! CALL YOUR SENATOR, that is what our tax dollars pay for:) I will keep you posted. This was a very encouraging start to our weekend.

  181. Avatar Harold says:

    Well I was told that I should have my ARC by the 4th of may. Now AND is saying that they have received my taxes and it is being processed. What does that mean.

  182. Avatar Harold says:

    I have received a small part of our taxes, but the ATC is still being reviewed and my TA told me that they have till 4-30-12 to give her a answer. So i am hoping that we will get it in the next few weeks.

  183. Avatar james says:

    called them back finally hear something ill be getting another letter this one saying 60 days,

  184. Avatar Ak says:

    What does it mean when they say the amount of your refund has been reserved when you call in and inquire about the status. When we called and got someone from the office they said it was within our 45 days and we couldn’t call yet, but that it meant the money was set aside by them but they aren’t saying yet whether it is approved or not.Anyone else have this experience or info on how long it takes from here. Our 45 day letter is up beginning of May and we haven’t heard anything else yet

  185. Avatar JJ says:

    I am really bothered by how many people are in the same situation as myself with the IRS and their audit process. I contacted a TA on 3/7 and this is May and I still have not received my basic refund. I contacted Senator Rubio for assistance/advice and I received a letter to “give the IRS another 45 days” and to call his office if I did not have resolution. I waited and then called his office 3 times and no return phone call. My question is are the IRS employees held accountable to anyone? Do they not have policy and procedure? Is there nobody we can contact above the IRS auditors for assistance? I don’t understand because I am a Federal employee and under strict accountability and if I treated even one person like the IRS is treating us I would be immediately fired.

  186. Avatar sherry says:

    Today the TA calld & said she is just waiting on them to put it in the computer . So does this means that I will be receiving My refund soon?

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      I suspect she means that the initial data from your return is being entered so it is probably too early to say whether you’ll receive the credit soon. Sorry to be the bearer of not-so-cheerful news.

  187. Avatar james says:

    sent my return in Jan, wheres my refund said i would get it back on Feb 28, this day came and went called IRS and they said call back next week next they said call in 2 weeks got my letter saying wait 45 days dated march 19 yeah im in review, not heard a word, they did not ask for anything today is 45 days and so i called and all i got was you have to wait the full 45 days, yep i can call tomorrow, this is so out to lunch, next year maybe we should all hold our tax money and tell them it is under review for 12 weeks or more wait they have laws and interest they would charge us. in this day and age this is so wrong in the time they are taking i could have gotten in my car and drove there with anything they needed and showed them my two kids…..sorry just needed to vent

  188. Avatar james says:

    wrote Senator Grassley’s office today and Congressman Tom Latham office on the 4th. I just really think its time we get answers after all i guess i have 60 days to write letters

  189. Avatar JJ says:

    I received great news yesterday! I had a message from Senator Rubio’s office (contacted their office for help approximately 3/10) and the caseworker assigned said he had called the IRS on May 2, got me a new TA and she is actually working on my case and going to review my submitted paper work (submitted 3 times!!) and try to help me get my refund!!! (In another 45 days or so-that’s their most common comment). So I guess perhaps I was inpatient? I did file 2/8! I really hope that I am not experiencing premature happiness only to be disappointed in the end. But I feel so much better now that I actually received a return phone call!! I hope everyone else here gets good news soon:)

  190. Avatar sherry says:

    @Dawn the IRS said it was entered on 2-21-12 , the TA was saying that it had went to Tenn.I ask the TA was it still in review & she said,We just waiting for IRS to enter it in the computer. I hope this explains why I ask the question in My last comment. Thanks for any info U can give Me !

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      I’m not sure, Sherry, I haven’t heard of that exact phrasing being used. Next time you speak with the Tax Advocate ask whether it is being entered for payment or entered for audit?

  191. Avatar ak says:

    we apparently should expect a call from our advocate on monday. Irs said that we need to wait 60 days even though the letter says 45 days and even though the first agent we talked to said we should’ve heard by tonight something and there is no letter scheduled to go out. It’s nice and helps you be patient when you get someone to answer questions and explain things

  192. Avatar Renee Smith says:

    Well…still nothing for us. Everything sent to TA back in March and paperwork resent directly to her. I called to check in and was told that they are still investigating our return for identity theft and/or erroneous information submitted and that is why I had to send birth certificates and social security cards AGAIN. Seriously irs people childrens names are changed when they are adopted!! TA said have to wait the 30 days which is tomorrow…I am aggravated to say the least. We are honest hard working people who adopted from foster care in Texas and we certainly did not file erroneous paperwork!! Their names WERE changed, it’s standard!!!!

  193. Avatar Susan (Chad's wife) says:

    Even better news…the WMR site updated today and says we are scheduled to have our refund direct deposited on May 9th which is Wednesday. I sure hope it’s true!!! We spoke to our senators office on Friday, they contacted a TA and today the website was updated.

  194. Avatar Susan says:

    Woke up this morning to our full ATC deposited into our bank account, just as the WMR site said it would be. HUGE shout out to Senator Grassley’s office who got a TA for us on Friday and 5 days later we have money! Woo Hoo!!!

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Susan, I’m so happy for you. Now if only we hear this from everyone who is currently waiting. Your post does give us hope!

  195. Avatar Chris Carr says:

    FYI…I got my refund this morning! I have to think that contacting my congressman helped get this done. So if some of you are still waiting and haven’t contacted your congressman, I’d highly recommend it (it couldn’t hurt).

    Best of luck to all.


  196. Avatar Jennifer says:

    Sent our tax return certified mail on March 21st. Got a letter stating we were in review and to wait 45 days from the date of the letter to call. Couple of weeks later received a letter stating we had to send in the supporting documents again. I faxed them the next day and then waited about 4 or 5 days before calling the number on my letter, which was the Doraville, Ga address.
    After reading all of the stories on here, I actually thought I was going to get the run around, BUT I spoke to a very nice lady, that looked up our return and said that there was nothing showing that they received my fax, but if I wanted to fax them to her right now, she would wait on the phone until they came through and then enter them. I did that and she said she would have the case assigned to her and close it that day. She called me back a couple hours later and said it was closed, and the entire refund was being issued, then gave me her direct number to call back in 2 weeks to get the direct deposit date. 🙂

  197. Avatar Renee Smith says:

    update: Same day they tell me our chilrens names didnt match they closed our case IN OUR FAVOR!!!! Wow, investigation of names verified. Of course they didnt match the court documents, they were adopted and their names were changed…should have highlighted the 4th page where the judge granted name changes…Have faith folks!!

  198. Avatar Harold says:

    My TA just called me and said that my ATC will be released in the 11th of may. Good luck all.

  199. Avatar Renee Smith says:

    @Dawn: Our wait is over but I want to help make this better for all adoptive parents. I can’t believe with technology today the IRS is having so many issues completing reviews for the ATC. If WE owed them money, they would turn our world inside out to find all the “hidden” aspects but they are unable to for a credit. It just doesn’t make sense. The folks who commented above about being denied have my deepest sympathy. It is just incredulous that paperwork is shredded and/or lost, that an auditor at the location where the return is received can’t do the 2nd, 3rd, and so on audits, that these auditors don’t understand basic adoption procedures/expenses. As far as I can tell my TA did NOTHING to help us. We waited for the “process” the IRS uses to finalize.
    Folks lets call our senators, congressmen, and the IRS watchdogs to fix this for every adoptive parent who is experiencing this problem and for all future ones as well. My prayers are with each of you!!

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Renee, yes, we all need to care and to work to make the adoption tax credit permanent and the implementation better. However, rather than each person act individually, I think we can make a much bigger impact by working together. A group of us adoption advocate organizations have joined together to advocate with one voice. See this blog to understand what you can do now:

  200. Avatar ak says:

    our ta said we know by monday if not then we’re contacting our congressman

  201. Avatar CC says:

    Melinda that is great…yay for you!!! Question….did they give you interest on your money? I was told by the examiner today that I would also be receiving interest on my money 3% and it would be from January to April when they closed the case.

    Dawn….Do you know if the interest they give you is 3% of your money for each month?

  202. Avatar CC says:

    Well they said they closed my case today and it takes two weeks for them to process it so it will not leave MA unitl April 24th. They said they will be releasing my entire refund which includes the ATC. They said once it leaves the examiner in MA, it is sent over to PA where the checks are issued. Paper checks are mailed out every Monday only, unless you chose direct deposit. She said I should have my money my the week of May 7th. Im going to talk to my advocate and see what she says because why do I have to wait another month. I am happy that it is done and I am receivng the money but I needed my return like yesterday and the way they make us wait even after it is closed is just crazy. It could be worse because some people are in worse perdicaments than me but we all still need our money regardless…

  203. Avatar kluv says:

    Update from #515,558.TA called first thing this morning and told me they will be sending check out on the 18th of May and it will take 5 to 10 days for me to get it!Finally after waiting since Jan.!And they had to pay me almost 500.00 in interest but i have to pay taxes on it!That part is a crock of crap its there fault for taking so long not mine but i have to pay,what a scam!I will keep you updated if it really happens on time!

  204. Avatar melinda says:


  205. Avatar JJ says:

    I adopted without state assistance and it has been almost 9 weeks since I sent my return and now they are saying another 6-8 before the audit is complete. I would still like to assist by signing your petition if this is appropriate since I don’t have the special needs certificate.

  206. Avatar JJ says:

    I’m so happy for those that are receiving TA help. Although I contacted them March 7, still no assistance. I faxed her the elec shut off notice and now the eviction notice-she still says by June 29. Even the representatives in the audit department said I should have received help and that the TA is the only one who can release my basic refund while I’m being audited. She just won’t do it. Although I mailed everything Feb. 8, I was told by that the office where my return is that they work on the returns by date that paper work is received for audits and that they are still in early Feb and since I faxed everything (again!) March 23, it could be many weeks before they get to me.

  207. Avatar Renee Smith says:

    Melinda – where do you see this? and is that all SS#’s that start with those numbers?

  208. Avatar Susan (Chad's wife) says:

    I contacted the IRS today to see if there was any updates on the status of our refund. The woman was really rude at first but I was sticky sweet with her and explained that our refund was an adoption credit and she changed her tone with me and even apologizing for the hold up. She explained to me that the IRS is going to be updating their system this Wednesday and that I should call back after 12pm on Wednesday and their may be a possibility of an update on our return status. We shall see…

  209. Avatar Harold says:

    I called the irs, and they confirmed that my tax check was released today. So we should receive it by monday. I will keep you all updated if we get it or not.

  210. Avatar kluv says:

    Update from 515,558,575.Well finally got the check today!Well im very excited finally after 4 long months!But i still have to wait now for it to clear at my bank.I hope everyone the best of luck and you all get your money soon!

  211. Avatar melinda says:


  212. Avatar Shay says:

    I see I’m not alone in this… I adopted to children in 2011.. I sent all my documents along with my tax, I finally recieve a lettter stating that my corresponding was recieve on March 26.. Then received a letter from an examiner telling me not to respone that she will respond to me my June 25 which is much longer then 45 days.. Please can someone give me a contact number to reach an advocate because I would hate to wait until June 25 for the IRS to tell me nonsense…. Thank you

  213. Avatar Harold says:

    I received a call from a tax advocate today. She said that they released part of my return and i need to send my adoption paperwork to her so they can get my atc released very soon. I will let everyone know when i hear something more.