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Orange County

It Doesn't Pay to Lose Touch With IRS

Agency owes $8 million to 9,283 Southland residents but lacks their addresses.

November 14, 2002|H.G. Reza | Times Staff Writer

The Internal Revenue Service has about $8 million in unclaimed refunds for taxpayers in Southern California, including $51,813 owed on a return from Orange County and $71,845 on one from Riverside County.

IRS officials said most of the unclaimed checks are from 2001 income tax filings, but some refunds are from earlier years. Spokesman Raphael Tulino said the agency has 9,283 checks due taxpayers from Los Angeles to Imperial counties.

The refunds range from $1 to the $71,845 due on the return filed in Riverside County, Tulino said. Taxpayers in Los Angeles County alone are due $4.14 million in refunds. The remaining $3.64 million is due taxpayers in Orange, San Bernardino, Riverside, San Diego and Imperial counties.

Statewide, the IRS is trying to return $13.4 million owed on 15,589 refunds, Tulino said. The largest is $103,000, and the average is $862, he said.

"The most common reason why these checks don't get delivered is because the taxpayer has moved and we don't have a new address," he said.

Until early December, taxpayers can check the status of their refunds by going online at and the "Where's My Refund" link. After that, the site will be taken offline for updating, so taxpayers should call (800) 829-1040.

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