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IRS Has $1.3 Billion for People Who Have Not Filed a 2006 Tax Return

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IR-2010-24, March 2, 2010
(Corrected March 4 to remove language on direct deposit.)

Washington — Unclaimed refunds totaling more than $1.3 billion are awaiting nearly 1.4 million people who did not file a federal income tax return for 2006, the Internal Revenue Service announced today. However, to collect the money, a return for 2006 must be filed with the IRS no later than Thursday, April 15, 2010.

The IRS estimates that the median unclaimed refund for tax-year 2006 is $604.

Some people may not have filed because they had too little income to require filing a tax return even though they had taxes withheld from their wages or made quarterly estimated payments. In cases where a return was not filed, the law provides most taxpayers with a three-year window of opportunity for claiming a refund. If no return is filed to claim the refund within three years, the money becomes property of the U.S. Treasury.

For 2006 returns, the window closes on April 15, 2010. The law requires that the return be properly addressed, mailed and postmarked by that date. There is no penalty for filing a late return qualifying for a refund.

The IRS reminds taxpayers seeking a 2006 refund that their checks will be held if they have not filed tax returns for 2007 or 2008. In addition, the refund will be applied to any amounts still owed to the IRS and may be used to satisfy unpaid child support or past due federal debts such as student loans.

By failing to file a return, people stand to lose more than refunds of taxes withheld or paid during 2006. For example, most telephone customers, including most cell-phone users, qualify for the one-time telephone excise tax refund. Available only on the 2006 return, this special payment applies to long-distance excise taxes paid on phone service billed from March 2003 through July 2006. The government offers a standard refund amount of $30 to $60, or taxpayers can base their refund request on the actual amount of tax paid. For details, see the Telephone Excise Tax Refund page on IRS.gov.

In addition, many low-and-moderate income workers may not have claimed the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). The EITC helps individuals and families whose incomes are below certain thresholds, which in 2006 were $38,348 for those with two or more children, $34,001 for people with one child and $14,120 for those with no children. For more information, visit the EITC Home Page.

Current and prior year tax forms and instructions are available on the Forms and Publications page of IRS.gov or by calling toll-free 1-800-TAX-FORM (1-800-829-3676). Taxpayers who are missing Forms W-2, 1098, 1099 or 5498 for 2006, 2007 or 2008 should request copies from their employer, bank or other payer. If these efforts are unsuccessful, taxpayers  can get a free transcript showing information from these year-end documents by calling 1-800-829-1040, or by filing Form 4506-T, Request for Transcript of Tax Return, with the IRS.

Individuals Who Did Not File a 2006 Return with an Estimated Refund

 

Individuals

Median

Estimated

Refund

Total

Estimated

Refunds ($000)*

Alabama

21,800

$608

$18,839

Alaska

6,300

$693

$6,997

Arizona

39,900

$507

$33,921

Arkansas

11,800

$579

$10,543

California

159,700

$554

$150,640

Colorado

25,200

$531

$23,119

Connecticut

15,500

$686

$18,676

Delaware

5,200

$622

$5,297

District of Columbia

5,100

$601

$5,448

Florida

101,700

$641

$110,709

Georgia

45,700

$560

$42,642

Hawaii

9,500

$668

$10,658

Idaho

5,800

$482

$4,723

Illinois

51,400

$655

$54,740

Indiana

26,600

$641

$24,146

Iowa

12,200

$596

$9,990

Kansas

13,400

$586

$11,771

Kentucky

14,500

$610

$12,976

Louisiana

23,800

$641

$24,615

Maine

4,900

$561

$4,203

Maryland

30,800

$616

$29,938

Massachusetts

29,000

$669

$31,939

Michigan

42,800

$618

$40,790

Minnesota

18,900

$552

$16,227

Mississippi

11,800

$567

$10,120

Missouri

25,800

$561

$21,090

Montana

4,000

$530

$3,425

Nebraska

6,100

$590

$5,390

Nevada

19,400

$575

$19,163

New Hampshire

5,400

$706

$5,943

New Jersey

39,900

$666

$43,030

New Mexico

9,800

$560

$8,612

New York

76,700

$666

$87,563

North Carolina

39,100

$539

$32,919

North Dakota

2,100

$589

$1,875

Ohio

44,600

$593

$38,467

Oklahoma

18,200

$576

$15,779

Oregon

21,900

$490

$18,340

Pennsylvania

47,100

$652

$45,050

Rhode Island

4,300

$652

$4,231

South Carolina

16,400

$534

$13,810

South Dakota

2,500

$604

$2,193

Tennessee

22,200

$598

$19,756

Texas

109,600

$653

$114,720

Utah

9,200

$528

$9,592

Vermont

2,200

$565

$1,782

Virginia

40,600

$594

$39,460

Washington

37,100

$641

$39,713

West Virginia

4,800

$660

$4,775

Wisconsin

17,000

$564

$14,903

Wyoming

2,900

$691

$3,229

US Armed Forces

4,800

$821

$4,367

US Possessions & Territories

200

$887

$444

Totals

1,367,200

$604

$1,333,288

 

*Excluding the Earned Income Tax Credit and other credits.

 

Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 15-Jan-2014