There will be a delay to the processing of 2013 tax returns according to IRS. Any correspondence that arrived at their offices during the shutdown was untouched until the shutdown was over. In addition, work stopped on the 2013 software for the Jan-April 2014 tax season. The agency had planned on accepting 2013 returns on Jan 21st, now it’s looking like Feb 4th. Some of the delay involves testing of new systems to detect and prevent refund fraud and identity theft. Also a potential problem is that the agency is only funded through Jan 15, 2014. So anything can happen this tax season. Patience could be your best friend! If you are a typical early filier and expect a refund, you could adjust your withholding before the end of the year to realize some of that money now. That way you won’t have to wait until sometime in February for your money.