Refund code does not mean audit

At Bankrate we strive to help you make smarter financial decisions. While we adhere to strict , this post may contain references to products from our partners. Here’s an explanation for

Regardless of whether tax filing season starts on time or, as has been the case for the past few years, is delayed a bit, one thing doesn’t change. There always are glitches.

This year, it’s Internal Revenue Service code 1121 that’s popping up when some taxpayers check on their refund via the agency’s “Where’s My Refund?” online tracking tool.

Taxpayers across the country report that when they filed, they got a confirmation of a refund. But a few days later when they checked on the status of their money, they got the numerical error notice.

Unfortunately, calls by those filers to the IRS produced confusing answers. So the IRS has issued an official statement about the error code.

Not an audit code

The good news is that a 1121 message does not mean you are being audited. That’s just a rumor that’s going around the Internet.

“This code is simply a reference number that our telephone representatives use to help them research your account,” the IRS says on its website. If the IRS needs more information from code-affected filers in order to process their returns, it will contact the taxpayers, usually by mail.

The IRS isn’t saying just how many of the more than 27 million returns it has received in just the first week of filing season are affected by the code. It’s only characterizing the 1121 returns as a “very small percentage of taxpayers.”

Of course, if you are in that group, it doesn’t seem like a small problem.

Don’t worry and keep calling

The IRS says not to worry. I know, easier said than done.

But veteran tax preparers say that the 1121 error is not unusual. It’s typically an internal processing issue.

Now that the IRS knows the digits are being issued on some returns, it’s working to determine whether it’s a glitch or whether it does indeed need more info from some taxpayers.

Were you an early filer this year? Have you checked on your refund’s status? Did you run into issues when checking on your refund status? Have you gotten your refund?

More tax info from Bankrate

Want the latest news on taxes, tax reform prospects, filing deadlines, Internal Revenue Service alerts and tax-saving tips? Subscribe to Bankrate’s free Daily Tax Tip newsletter, our Weekly Tax Tip newsletter or, if you’re a true tax geek, both!

You also can follow me on Twitter: @taxtweet.

Veteran contributing editor Kay Bell is the author of the book “The Truth About Paying Fewer Taxes” and co-author of the e-book “Future Millionaires’ Guidebook.”