ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Staffing issues at the IRS could delay your income tax refund this year.

Scott Adair from the New York State Society of CPAs discussed the potential delay and other aspects of the new tax season Thursday during News 8 at Sunrise.

“As everyone is probably well aware of at this point, tax filing season kicked off this past Monday on January 24,” Adair said. “The IRS opens up its website for people to start filing taxes. Another key date to remember is the April 18 filing deadline for all of our personal income tax returns. And W2s should start rolling in anytime now.”

Adair said the Internal Revenue Service, which processes income tax returns, has signaled that there could be refund delays this filing season. “They are certainly and have been for a number of years, been short-staffed. The pandemic has not helped them as far as getting caught up on their work. Being out of the office as you can well imagine has created a huge backlog of paper returns from the IRS’s standpoint and their processing. So they are asking for people to electronically file personal tax returns this year and I would strongly recommend or even urge that for tax filers as that is the most efficient way for them to be able to process your tax return and get your refund back to you as quickly as possible.”

Tax filers should be aware of some key changes this filing season as well. Adair said the primary changes involve the Child Tax Credit and Charitable Contributions. With respect to the Child Tax Credit, Adair said, “You’re going to go through a reconciliation process with your tax return to make sure you got the proper amount during the year. You may be entitled to a larger refund if you did not get the proper amount. You may also have to pay a little bit back if you got too much. The other thing that’s out there is charitable contributions which historically have only been available for write-off on your tax return if you itemize deductions but the deduction for charitable contribution now has a $300 to $600 limitation that you get for not itemizing. You can take it right off the face of your 1040. And then the last thing that I wanted to highlight was, again, the stimulus checks that you have received during 2021 are non-taxable income for you this year.”