IRS News Release  
November 27, 1990

Taxpayers Owed Millions, IRS Says

WASHINGTON - How would you like an extra $569 for shopping or paying bills? That's the average amount owed to the 72,000 taxpayers who haven't yet claimed their 1989 federal income tax refunds.

All these taxpayers need to do is contact the IRS and the refund check will be reissued. If you were due a refund and believe you haven't gotten it, contact the IRS at 1-800-TAX-1040 (1-800-829-1040).

The IRS said that more than 72,000 tax refund checks, totaling over $41 million, were returned this year by the Postal Service because they were undeliverable. Each year thousands of checks are returned because the addresses are incorrect or the taxpayer moved and did not leave a forwarding address. Through publicity efforts the IRS tries to find taxpayers who are due refunds. Sometimes, however, the IRS has to keep the refund on the books and when the taxpayer files another return, the earlier refund can be sent out.

Most taxpayers, the IRS noted, is filing their return electronically and electing to have the refund deposited directly into their bank account. Many of the 4.2 million taxpayers who filed electronically this year opted for direct deposit of refunds and eliminated the possibility of lost, stolen or undeliverable refund checks.

Undelivered refund checks are not the general rule, the IRS said. For the last filing season, nearly 76 million taxpayers received $68 billion in tax refunds. The average refund check was $897.

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