Q+A: How Long Does it Take to Get a Tax Refund

One of the most common questions we get asked is: ‘How long does it take to get a tax rebate’. In this article we will answer this question and also how to ensure your claim is processed as quickly as possible.

How long does it take to get a tax refund?
Refunds usually take between 30-45 days to process by the Inland Revenue. This 30-45 day timeframe applies only if you include all the correct documents with your claim. If your application is incomplete and the Inland Revenue have to write to you to request more information your claim can be severely delayed.

Also the time it takes to claim your tax rebate will depend on the backlog of post that your specific tax office is experiencing. During peak periods, like at the end of the tax year your claim may take longer to process.

How can I speed up my tax rebate?
Tax refund agents can often get a refund quicker as they have the experience of dealing with the Inland Revenue as well as agent priority phone lines.

If you are applying yourself you should make sure you include all the relevant information with your claim to avoid any potential delays. You may need the following forms, depending on your situation.

I have lost my P60/P45’s
If you are missing any of your tax documents such as a P45 or P60 you can get a replacement by asking your employer for a statement of earnings on company headed paper. They are required by law to provide a copy and this will be an acceptable replacement for the Inland Revenue when making your claim


  1. Ashley Hesk says:

    hi i am self employed and filed my self assesment tax return last monday and still havent heard anything, should i get worried? or is this normal and could go in soon thanks so much ashley hesk

  2. Faysal Therese says:

    I have moved overseas for work and I applied for my tax refund (p65) prior to leaving the UK.

    How long does it take for my tax to be refunded to me?

    Kind Regards

  3. jane hollis says:

    what are extra security checks on tax refunds

  4. Marc Charles king says:

    I don’t have a bank.account how can I get my personal allowance

  5. Julie says:

    Help need some advice! I sent the p85 along with my original p45 (I now live in Cambodia) for tax owed from my last uk job which I left in July 2012. H.M.R.C are claiming they did not receive my P45 but this is insanely untrue (I can vouch on my heart) as I sent the P85 with the P45 in the same envelope back in August. I have told them this and been spending lots of money on recorded delivery letters explaining (costs me $40 every letter I send) and I just got another ‘standard’ letter which fails to even acknowledge my letter explaining that they have my P45 saying they cannot do my claim until I send them my original P45 as if I had not even written to them. Also the bizarre thing is in the most recent letter they say thanks for sending p85 in July- but it was not sent to them until September. I am finding this extremely frustrating as it feels as if they are taking advantage of the situation I am here in Cambodia to avoid as much as they can to give me back the money that is rightfully mine. What on earth can I do? Really appreciate any advice here.

  6. Gary Chalke says:

    I’m in the process of receiving a rebate do u no how long this will be? Thanks

  7. sir says:

    Planning on leaving uk in 4 months and will be working till then, when should I claim my tax back?

  8. peter says:

    I for a letter from tax men confirming that they proceedings
    Payment to my agent account, but he do not receive money yet, how long that my take to transfer the money?

  9. mandy hooks says:

    ihave received a p800 and it says repayment due £1000 what does this mean?

  10. Simon says:

    I have been told by the Tax office that they have done a investigation in to what has been paid and they owe me £1000 this was 3 weeks ago how long does it normally take from this point when they have already got all documents?

  11. Craig mc says:

    I done my expenses tax return back in may 12 and they sent me a letter back saying I had to do a sef cert as my expenses were over the threshold of £2500 as my company didn’t pay expenses for my mileage. I done a sef cert in June only to ring wondering where my refund was in September 12 and was told that my form was incomplete, ok fine but why wasn’t I informed that you needed more info? Not our responsibility they said ? Anyway to say I was angry is an understatement .. They have all info required now … But can you tell me how long it will take to get my mileage refund …. Thanks

  12. claire says:

    I payed to much council tax iv sent my bank details how long should it take to go into my account?

  13. Debra Smith says:

    My daughter has started work with a company that she was doing work experience with from the job centre, she has been paying a br tax amount on her wage even though she earns below the tax bracket. About two weeks into her employment the job centre sent her P45 which has been sent on to her companys head office.I realise that she will probably have to wait until end of tax year to get rebate but when should the company stop taxing her as she does not earn enough to pay tax.

  14. tom legge says:

    Hi i recieved a letter saying i am owed tax rebate on 2 occasions i have got he 1 cheque but after 2 weeks of waiting havnt recieved he 2 nd 1 all the letters come at the same time to inform me i was owed money

  15. Davey king says:

    Hi, I recievce a letter from the tax office today regarding my tax return, in the letter it states how much I am owed, how long does it take from that point for the money to go into my account?


  16. mark says:

    how long is for tax refund

  17. Question says:

    Inland revenue are doing a security check on my tax rebait, how long do security checks take?

  18. Mark Brown says:

    Hi I just turned 18 and I got a letter today from Hm Revenue & Customs and it said tax overpaid > 86.80 and then it said repayment due 86.80. what does this mean? does it mean that they owe me that money or I owe them money ? If they owe me money then when will I get it ? Please answer me back

  19. Lee says:

    i have had a letter saying i am due a tax return with the amount but it says the cheque will be sent seperatly.how long will it take to get here?

  20. Jack says:

    Me and my brother are both self employed window fitters with the Same accountant. My brother gave his reciepts in about the 12rd of April and got his rebate about the 29th April, yet I did the same the day after (13th) and not revived anything as of yet.

    I don’t remember having any problems last year and i was just wondering how long (approx) could I be waiting ??


  21. Pat says:

    I did my tax return on line on the 2nd may 2012 when will it go into my bank account

  22. nikkie says:

    I have received my tax calculation letter and have 4 different figures from 4 years, I have received one chq for one amount, am I owed the other 3 balances as well? Its a bit confusing?!

  23. Fiona HUGHES says:

    I have gone from wrongly being on tax code OT to worngly being on Tax code BR and now 747L. When I worked out what I have paid tax in the last year,compared to what I have earned,I should not have paid any! Is this right? If I earned under 7475.00?

  24. oliver w says:

    i have had a letter saying i am due a tax return with the amount but it says the cheque will be sent seperatly.how long will it take to get here?

  25. MANISHA says:

    I want to claim tax back as I am leaving UK and want it through a cheque at my back home address in India. Can I get it in this way.

  26. Ray says:

    Register with HMRC online and deal with them through your own very secure HMRC webpage by email this will greatly speeds things up. (it did for me) Security is absolutely paramount nowadays there are crooks operating out there after your details.

  27. Jamie says:

    i received my earnings and tax information through my employers accountants and noticed i overpaid on tax about 1400.I sent this information off to inland revenue and its been like 11 weeks now and still no reply, also i’m currently not in speaking terms with my previous employer so if i need any further documents off him im screwed lol, how long will it take inland revenue to refund my money??

  28. Tax Fix says:


    Thanks for your question. The simple answer is that it could take anything from several weeks to several months. Well publicised problems at HMRC have resulted in backlogs and so you may, I am afraid, have to wait for some time before receiving your rebate.

  29. amanda says:

    I sent over the final piece of info needed for my tax rebate about a week ago, what is the time period i should expect to wait?

  30. peter says:

    hi, im on benefits, ESA & DLA, my wife gets carers allowance and we have 3 children. ive not worked for 17 months. do you think i would get any tax back? Many thanx Pete.

  31. matthew earl says:

    i received a p800 dated 22nd may, should i have received the refund by now?

  32. rob says:

    how long dose it take for my tax return money to come when you fill it in online

  33. angela says:

    I finished college on june 2010 and started working in july with a tax code of OT. I changed jobs in october and was on a tax code of br. In march 2011 i got a latter from hm revenue and customs saying my tax code had changed from OT to 647L and that I now have a perosnal allowence of £6475 for april 2010 untill april 2011 but I get paid monthy on the 21st of march my tax code was still br. Im not too sue what all this means, will i get a tax refund and if so how do i got about claiming it back or does the comapany i now work for do that for me?!

  34. JJ says:

    Received letter – dated 07/02 – that will will be transfered into my account in SA – month later still nothing.
    How long does it take?

  35. Denise says:

    I received a letter from the tax office in September 2010 stating I was due a refund as at (2nd March) still no refund received. Is this normal!!

  36. chloe says:

    Hi, i will be claiming petrol expenses back from the tax office in april and i was wondering how long will it take until i recieve the money? Thanks.

  37. Kirsty says:

    How long does it take to receive your milage tax rebate?

  38. Ateven bowles says:

    I recieved letters stating that i was owed £565 on overpayment of tax back in december 2010,the day i recieved this letter i called & informed you that i hadn’t got an account & that could my partners bank be used, i was informed this was ok. I sent back a letter of conformation stating i am happy to have it paid it to my partners account & sent all bank details & the cheque back to you.i then called about a week 10 days later to see if you had recieved & was then informed that you all the details required & it would take 6 weeks from when recieved!!
    I still haven’t recieved nothing

    • TaxFix says:

      Ateven bowles: Did you claim your tax refund yourself? If so you would need to contact your local tax office. If you used our tax refund service you can contact your tax refund manager on: 0203 151 2829

  39. Peter says:

    How long does it take to get my mileage expenses back its
    Been 4 weeks since i sent it in and still nothing.

    • TaxFix says:

      Peter: Refunds usually take between 4-8 weeks but can take longer if there are back logs with your particular tax office.

  40. Amelia Davie says:

    I handed my P45 to my employer last month, who would have sent it off by now.
    However, between jobs, I had changed my name from Amelia Southam to Amelia Davie – could this slow things down?

  41. my money was released on tuesday and it says:

    how long !!!!!

    • TaxFix says:

      my money was…: If your refund was released on Tuesday one of our agents should be in contact within the next few days to find out where you would like your refund deposited. If you do not hear anything within 7 days you can call 0203 151 2829 or Email admin@admin.taxfix.co.uk

  42. sk says:

    just give them a call and talk to them maybe they’ll make your case a priority

  43. Steven Hopkins says:

    My accountants tell me I have overoaid tax over the last 5 years and that the tax man owes me £2,000.

    That was in January. The Tax Man asked for more paperwork in March and promised they would get round to my claim in April. Still no news!

    When will he get round to paying me? I need the money. If the positions were reversed I can just imagine the penalties and interest I would be charged. I am so angry.

    What can I do?

    • TaxFix says:

      Steven Hopkins: I understand your frustration. The Inland Revenue can often take months to deal with refunds. Unfortunately there is nothing that can be done to speed this up apart from supplying all the documentation that they require as soon as possible.

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