The term refund refers to the request to the IRS by the taxpayer for the return of excessive income taxes paid. According to data released by the IRS on March 2, 2005, the dollar amount of refunds sent to taxpayers is surprisingly strong in comparison to last year. Total refunds through February 25 were $93.3 billion, up $6.5 billion (7.5%) over the same period last year. Strong refund payments in the last three years are related to both the weak economy and three successive rounds of tax law changes which have both contributed to the temporary boost of refunds. Currently, over $2 billion is sitting in the Internal Revenue Service account unclaimed by rightful owners.
The money is owed to 1.7 million taxpayers who never filed 2001 tax returns. For the 2004 tax year, the gross income filing requirements are as follows: §
Single, under 65, not blind $7,950
Married, filing jointly, under 65, neither blind $15,900
Head of household, under 65, not blind $10,250
People may have had taxes withheld from their wages but had too little income to require filing a tax return. Others may not have had any tax withheld but would be eligible for the refundable Earned Income Tax Credit. Nevertheless, whether or not a taxpayer is required to file, in order to be eligible for a refund an individual must file Form 1040X (1120X for corporations) to claim the refund within three years. The government is able to determine the appropriate amount of refund through these forms. The IRS estimates that approximately half of the nonfilers could claim refunds of more than $484. There is no penalty assessed by the IRS for filing a late return qualifying for a refund. For those who failed to file and are eligible for a refund, can still claim a refund on the 2001 tax year until April 15, 2005. If these refunds are not claimed the money becomes property of the U.S. Treasury.
The IRS will not issue '01 refunds unless an individual filed in subsequent years. There is...
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