Show download pdf controls
  • Check the progress of your tax return

    Check the progress of your tax return using our self-help services.

    Most tax returns lodged online are processed within two weeks. We process paper tax returns manually and this can take up to 10 weeks (may take up to seven weeks to show on our systems).

    If your tax return requires manual checks processing it may take longer.

    On this page

    If you need to fix a mistake or have forgotten to include something in your tax return, see Correct (amend) your tax return.

    How to track the progress of your tax return

    The quickest and easiest way to check the progress of your tax return is by using our self-help services.

    You can check:

    Once your tax return processes, we'll issue a notice of assessment that will show:

    • tax you owe on your taxable income
    • credit you have for tax already paid during the income year
    • tax amounts you need to pay or will receive as a refund.

    See also:

    Check online using myGov

    If you link your myGov account to the ATO you can check the progress of your tax return or amendments through your myGov account.

    To check the progress of your tax return:

    • sign in to myGovExternal Link
    • select ATO from your member services
    • from the home page select Manage tax returns
    • then select the income year you are checking.

    The status shows how your tax return is progressing.

    If you don't have a myGov account, it's easy to create an account and link it to the ATO.

    Check the progress in the ATO app

    To check the progress of your 2020–21 tax return in the ATO app:

    • login to the ATO app
    • select Your tax return for 2020–21.

    The status will be displayed on the screen within the ATO app. Use the help function for more information by selecting '?' from the top right-hand side of the screen in the app.

    Check by phone

    Use our self-help phone service at any time:

    • phone 13 28 65 – have your tax file number handy
    • choose option 1 and then option 1.

    Check with your registered tax agent

    If you lodge with a registered tax agent, you or your agent can check the progress of your tax return anytime by signing in to ATO online services through myGov or the ATO app.

    Status of your tax return

    When you check the progress of your tax return using our online services, you might see one of these statuses (not all tax returns will display all of these):

    • In progress – Processing
      You may see this status at two stages of processing:  
      • we have received your tax return and we’ve started processing it
      • we have finalised your tax return and are issuing a notice of assessment (you will see an estimated assessment issue date by clicking the down arrow).
       
    • In progress – Information pending
      We are collecting information to help us finish processing your tax return. We will contact you if we need more information.
    • In progress – Under review
      We are manually reviewing your tax return to make sure everything is right before we finalise it. This may include reviewing your prior year returns. We will contact you if we need more information.
    • In progress – Balancing account
      We are balancing the result of your tax return with your accounts with us and other Australian Government agencies and calculating the amount we will refund or you need to pay. We will contact you if we need more information.
    • Issued – $ Amount
      You'll be able to see your notice of assessment online, along with the date for payment and if you're entitled to a refund.

    If you provided valid Australian bank account details to us when you lodge, we will pay your refund directly into the bank account you nominate.

    Email and SMS communications

    We may send you an email or SMS (text message) to let you know:

    • if your tax return or refund has been delayed and why
    • when your refund is on its way.

    Our messages will never ask you to reply by SMS or email to provide personal information, such as your tax file number (TFN).

    Why there may be a delay in processing your tax return

    Although most tax returns lodged online will be processed in two weeks, some tax returns may take longer to process. For example, if:

    • you attempt to lodge your tax return again after previously lodging
    • you have made an amendment before we finish processing your original tax return or any previous amendments
    • you lodge tax returns for several years at once
    • you are under an insolvency administration – for example bankruptcy or debt arrangement (check to make sure your insolvency practitioner advises us of your situation before you lodge your tax return)
    • the Australian financial institution account details you included in your tax return are not current
    • we need to check information in your tax return – we may need to contact your employer, financial institutions, private health insurers or you to confirm or cross-check information in your tax return
    • we need to check information with other Australian Government agencies, for example, Services Australia, including Centrelink or Child Support – we're required to pay part or all of your tax refund to other agencies if there are outstanding amounts (you will be notified if this was the case)
    • you have a tax debt or previously unresolved tax debt with us
    • you have a tax debt that was previously put on hold (also known as a re-raised or non-pursed debt) – see Using refunds or credits to pay debt.

    If your tax return is delayed, you do not need to contact us. We will contact you if we need more information and will keep you or your agent informed of any ongoing delays.

    If you think your circumstances put you under serious financial hardship review your eligibility to request priority processing.

    Your notice of assessment

    Once we've processed your tax return, we'll issue your notice of assessment telling you if you will receive to a refund or that you have a tax debt to pay. You will also receive a tax receipt showing how your taxes have been allocated to key categories of government expenditure

    If you have a myGov account linked to the ATO, your notice of assessment and tax receipt will be sent to your myGov Inbox. You will receive an email or SMS from myGov telling you that you have mail.

    If you lodge your tax return by mail, your paper notice of assessment and tax receipt will be sent to the postal address we have for you.

    Find out about:

    Last modified: 02 Aug 2021QC 32085