Filing Income Taxes
Toward the end of the tax year, Joe's company has to send him a W-2 form in the mail. This happens by January 31. This form details how much money Joe made during the last year and how much federal tax was withheld from his income. This information can also be found on Joe's last paycheck of the year, but he'll need to send the W-2 to the IRS for processing purposes.
At some point between the time Joe receives his W-2 and April 15, Joe will have to fill out and return his taxes to one of the IRS service and processing centers. Once the IRS receives Joe's tax returns, an IRS employee keys in every piece of information on Joe's tax forms. This information is then stored in large magnetic tape machines. If Joe is due a tax refund, he is sent a check in the mail in the next few weeks. If Joe uses e-File or TeleFile, his refund can be direct-deposited into his bank account.