If you were planning to use your tax refund to pay off holiday credit card bills, you may need to come up with a different plan.

Thanks to a new tax law, your refund may be delayed … even if you file on day one.

While we can start filing our tax returns on January 23, 2017, the IRS is now required to hold some of our refunds until at least February 15. And, unfortunately, this law impacts those of us who really need that refund check.

If like millions of Americans, you claim the Earned Income Tax Credit (a special tax break for low-income families) or the Additional Child Tax Credit (where families with at least three children can get back more than they owe in taxes) on your 2016 income tax return, the IRS is now required to hold your entire refund until February 15.

Plus, if you add in the extra delays brought on by weekends and holidays, it could be the end of February before you see your refund … even if you get it directly deposited into your bank account.

Despite the expected delay, be cautious of anyone claiming they can speed up your refund. “Refund advances” may sometimes involve stiff fees that reduce the amount you end up with. If you decide to go this route, make sure to read the agreement so you know up front how much it will cost.