The number of self-prepared federal returns has increased almost 6% so far this season and professionally prepared returns have dropped, according to the IRS.

As of March 6, more than 28.9 million e-filed returns were prepared by the taxpayers themselves -- 5.6% more than the 27,397,000 self-prepared returns filed at this time last tax season.

By contrast, the IRS has received 33,419,000 e-filed returns from professional preparers, a 4% drop from the 34,816,000 returns at this time last tax season.

The service added that Americans have turned to nearly 200 million times so far this season for prep answers and to check refund status, among other reasons. This represents a 10% increase over the same time last year.

This year, 66.7 million returns have been filed so far, a drop of 0.7%. The IRS has processed 64.9 million returns, a drop of 1.2% from 2014.

The IRS has issued 54,258,000 refunds so far this year, a falloff of 2.1% compared with 2014. The average refund so far this season is $2,988.

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