If you are expecting your tax refund to bail you out when those Christmas charges appear on your January credit card bill, think again. You refund will be delayed.

The IRS says that tax refunds will be delayed until February 15th, at the earliest. According to the IRS:

A new law requires the IRS to hold refunds until mid-February in 2017 for people claiming the Earned Income Tax Credit or the Additional Child Tax Credit. In addition, new identity theft and refund fraud safeguards put in place by the IRS and the states may mean some tax returns and refunds face additional review.

IRS commissioner John Koskinen said in a, IRS  press release . “We don’t want anyone caught by surprise if they get their refund a few weeks later than in previous years.”

The IRS Tweeted:

The IRS also says it will be looking at tax return filing a little closer this year, which will cause further delays. Basically they are warning you not to cheat. The IRS says that this change will help ensure that taxpayers get the refund they are owed by giving the IRS more time to help detect and prevent fraud.