Understanding Your CP16T Notice

What this notice is about

We made changes to your return and applied your refund to outstanding tax debts.


What you need to do

  • Follow the instructions in your notice.
  • If you agree with the changes we made:
    • And you have a balance due, you can pay online or mail your payment to the address on the notice.
    • Correct your copy of your tax return, but don't send it to us.
  • If you don't agree:
    • You can call or write to us using the information on your notice.
    • You can find helpful answers to common questions below.

Answers to common questions

I wasn’t aware of another tax debt. How do I find out more details about it?

You can use the Get Transcript application to obtain a tax return transcript or Record of Account Transcript. Married taxpayers may only access each other’s information for years where the filing status is “Married filing jointly.”

What caused my tax return to change?

The explanation is on the notice. If you need additional information, you can call us at the phone number on your notice.

What can I do if my refund was incorrectly applied to my spouse’s debt?

You may qualify as an “injured spouse.” Review Form 8379, Injured Spouse Allocation (PDF) and its instructions (PDF).


Tips for next year

Consider filing your taxes electronically. You can avoid mistakes and find credits and deductions that you may qualify for. In many cases, you can file for free. Learn more about e-file.

To avoid the same issue next year, correct your copy of this year's tax return. If you use a tax preparer, give them a copy or have them correct their copy.

Printable samples of this notice (PDF)

Need Help?

  • You can authorize someone to contact the IRS on your behalf.
  • See if you qualify for help from a Low Income Taxpayer Clinic.
  • If you can’t find what you need online, you can call the IRS at the 800, 866, or 888 number listed on the notice.