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Orange County

IRS Refund May Be Waiting for You

Thousands in Orange County have checks totaling $1.8 million that lack only a correct address.

November 12, 2003|Jean O. Pasco | Times Staff Writer

Here's a time when 2,506 people in Orange County do not want to dodge the IRS.

The Internal Revenue Service is sitting on checks, deemed undeliverable by the U.S. Postal Service, ranging from $1 to $143,576.

They are refunds for income taxes as well as a special advance child-tax credit issued this summer.

The unclaimed checks for Orange County residents total $1.8 million.

Those with Internet access can log onto the agency's Web site at www.irs.gov to see if there's a check for them.

Click on "IRS Has $118 Million in Checks to Resend," then on "Where's My Refund?" or "Where's My Advance Child Tax Credit?"

Those without computer access can call the IRS toll-free assistance line at (800) 829-1040.

The outreach is part of a national effort to unite taxpayers with their refund checks by Dec. 5, said Raphael Tulino, IRS spokesman for Southern California. After that, taxpayers cannot claim checks until they file tax returns next year.

In Southern California, 9,666 refund checks, worth $6 million, remain unclaimed.

Nationally, unclaimed checks total $50 million for 115,744 child-tax credits, plus $66 million in refund checks for another 92,810 recipients.

"Our goal is to get this money back in the hands of the people it belongs to," IRS Commissioner Mark W. Everson said.

"As soon as we get the correct address, we can start the check on its way."

About 24 million advance child-tax credit refunds were issued this summer, totaling $1.4 billion.

Most of the unclaimed refund checks were returned because they couldn't be delivered to the name and address the agency had on file.

The postal service estimates that about 40 million Americans move each year.

Taxpayers can file a change of address form (Form 8822) by downloading the form from the Web site or by calling (800) 829-3676 ([800] TAX-FORM).

Taxpayers also can avoid payment delays by having refunds deposited directly into a personal checking or savings account. The option is available for both paper and electronically filed returns.

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