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Dude, Where's my refund? IRS website overrun

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By The Associated Press
Friday, Feb. 15, 2013, 12:01 a.m.

The Internal Revenue Service has a message for taxpayers eager to learn the status of their tax refund: Please don't check the IRS website every five minutes — once a day is enough.

The IRS says its “Where's my refund?” website and smartphone app are being overwhelmed by eager taxpayers. The agency says its systems are only updated once a day, usually overnight, and the same information is available on the website, the IRS2go smartphone app and IRS toll-free phone lines.

The IRS provides three updates: when the tax return is received, when the refund is approved and when the refund is sent. To avoid delays, the agency says the best time to check on refunds is evenings and weekends.

“I think what we're seeing is just part of the natural evolution in the refund process,” said IRS spokesman Terry Lemons. “Twenty-five years ago, you desperately checked the mailbox every day.”

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