Details on new law that will delay many tax refunds

Some of the issues being examined are the earned income tax credit and the additional child tax credit.

A 1040 tax form appears on display, Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2017, in New York. The IRS is delaying tax refunds for millions of low-income families as the agency steps up efforts to combat identity theft and fraud. Starting in 2017, a federal law requires the tax agency to delay refunds until Feb. 15 for people who claim the earned income tax credit and the additional child tax credit. The IRS says processing times will delay most of the refunds until the end of February. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – Tax season is here, and this year there’s a lot of talk about whose tax refund will be delayed.

The concern comes after a report earlier this week that more than 40 million low-income families may have their refund checks delayed because of ramped up efforts to stop identity theft and fraud.

Some of the issues being examined are the earned income tax credit and additional child tax credit.

The crackdown is prompted by a new law called the PATH Act (Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes).  The law was enacted in 2015.

The measure gives the IRS time to examine tax returns for accuracy and fraud.

Brian Ashcraft with Liberty Tax Service says the IRS is getting better at catching cheaters and the new law helps.

“Last year, the IRS reduced identity theft by 50 percent. This year, the PATH Act is hopefully going to help us make more strikes to reduce that number even more and reduce identity theft,” Ashcraft said.

The PATH Act mandates that the IRS not issue a refund on tax returns claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit or Additional Child Tax Credit until Feb. 15.