Finance Globe

U.S. financial and economic topics from several finance writers.
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IRS Holding $153 Million in Undeliverable Tax Refunds

The Internal Revenue Service put out a reminder that the agency is hanging on to $153.3 million in undeliverable tax refund checks - owed to just over 99,000 taxpayers.

The undeliverable tax refunds averaging $1,547 could not be delivered to their recipients because of mailing address errors, the IRS said in a statement released on Wednesday.

The IRS advises taxpayers who believe they missed their tax refund due to problems with their mailing address to use the “Where’s My Refund?” tool on IRS.gov. The tool will provide the status of their refund and, in some cases, instructions on how to resolve delivery problems. Taxpayers can also check on their refund status over the phone and obtain change-of-address instructions. The IRS telephone version of “Where’s My Refund?” can be reached at 1-800-829-1954.

Though relatively few tax refund checks are returned to the IRS as undeliverable, taxpayers can avoid the problem altogether by opting for their future tax refunds to be directly deposited into their bank account - and have the option to split their refund into two or three financial accounts or even buy a savings bond with their refund.

By choosing direct deposit, taxpayers can receive their refunds much more quickly than if they wait for a paper check to arrive in the mail. Taxpayers who electronically file their returns and choose direct deposit typically receive their refunds in 7 to 10 days if there are no errors on their return. The IRS said that over 78 million taxpayers chose direct deposit last year and 8 out of 10 chose to e-file their returns.

The IRS also used the announcement as an opportunity to remind taxpayers to be on alert for phishing scams. The IRS never contacts taxpayers by email. If you receive an email appearing to be from the IRS, consider it a scam attempting to get you to disclose your personal or financial information. Also, avoid opening email attachments or clicking on links in these emails to avoid malicious code that could infect your computer.
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Thursday, 17 October 2019

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