IRS Is Holding $1.3 Billion In Unclaimed 2006 Tax Refunds

Thursday, April 1, 2010, 2:41 AM | 1 Comment

It’s always the IRS that’s after us folks. You don’t get too many chances to square off with the agency. When folks filed their tax return in 2007 for the year 2006, $1.3 billion worth of tax refunds were not, for one reason or another, delivered to the respective tax filers.

IRS has your money for the year in question. Maybe you have moved or it got lost on its way to your pocket.

If you believe you are eligible to receive the not-delivered tax refund, you have only until April 15 for the said year – no more than two weeks – to claim it.

Reasons why you didn’t get 2006 tax refund

There can be many reasons. The most common are:

  • You moved after filing your tax return without forwarding your mail.
  • You neglected to cash a check.
  • You died and didn’t forward your cemetery address [you must be a ghost to read this post. I welcome you anyway. Keep in touch.]

How to claim what’s yours

To collect, you must file a paper tax return for that year, says agency spokesman Eric Smith. You can call the IRS to request copies of W-2s and 1099s for that year, if your records are incomplete. Keep in mind that retrieving your records can take several weeks, so act fast like now at this minute. At the very least, most consumers are eligible for $30 to $60 from the repealed Telephone Excise Tax Refund, based on exemptions claimed.

Use the IRS Where’s My Refund? tool to check the status. You will need to provide the following:

  • Your Social Security number or taxpayer ID
  • Filing status
  • The exact dollar amount of the refund.

Refund from your State

Conduct a free search using the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators (NAUPA)‘s Missing Money, which pulls from most states’ databases. Then check the databases for each state where you have lived or conducted business.

To successfully claim the assets, you need evidence showing you are whom you claim you are and linking you to the money. That could simply be a photo ID, or for something like a utility deposit, a bill from your old address, he says. If you are successful, the state may charge a processing fee of up to 2%.

The verdict for the current year filing for 2009

Some tax analysts believe in this current year, when folks file tax returns for the year 2009, 1.4 million individuals could be affected [by not receiving tax refund], with an average refund due of $800. “These are people who did not file a return for whatever reason, but if they had, would qualify for a refund,” says Smith.

It’s like losing $800. It really is free money. If Uncle Sam owes you, there are no penalty fees for filing your return years late. However, the reverse is not true [a big bummer].

In a Nutshell
Steer clear of online databases that, for a fee, allow you to search for unclaimed assets. It’s the same information the free state sites have. So don’t bother with the websites that charge you money for the purpose. It may not be a scam, but why pay money for something you can get for free.

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