We hand-deliver all of our clients' HARPTA filings to the Honolulu office. In the past, all of the HARPTA filings were reviewed in Honolulu, but over the second half of 2019, we have been seeing the Honolulu office send some of the N-288C (HARPTA early refund) forms that were filed in Honolulu to the tax offices on the island where the sale occurred.
So how does this affect early refund filers? Well, it depends. The review of the N-288C filings is quite thorough, mainly because of the dollar amounts involved, so the reviews do take time. But on the other hand, the people who review the N-288Cs tend to be the most experienced auditors, also because of the dollar amounts involved. But if your island happens to have a backlog of N-288C forms to file, it's certainly possible that your form may take longer to review. As you might expect, Honolulu has the largest pool of people who are capable of reviewing the filed N-288C forms, so 8-16 weeks from filing until you receive your check is typical. The wait for an N-288C filing being reviewed on an outer island is probably a little less predictable.