has $1,875,483 in undeliverable refunds and economic stimulus payments
for New Mexicans
The Internal Revenue Service is looking for taxpayers across the
county who are missing more than 279,000 economic stimulus checks
totaling about $163 million and more than 104,000 regular refund
checks totaling about $103 million that were returned by the U.S.
Postal Service due to mailing address errors.
“People across the country are missing tax refunds and stimulus
checks. We want to get this money into the hands of taxpayers where
it belongs,” said IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman.
All a taxpayer has to do is update his or her address once. The
IRS will then send out all checks due.
It is crucial that taxpayers who may be due a stimulus check update
their addresses with the IRS by November 28, 2008. By law, economic
stimulus checks must be sent out by December 31 of this year. The
undeliverable economic stimulus checks average $583 nation-wide.
For New Mexicans, the average economic stimulus check is $600.
The “Where’s My Stimulus Payment?” tool on www.irs.gov
is the quickest and easiest way for a taxpayer to check the status
of a stimulus check and receive instructions on how to update his
or her address. Taxpayers without Internet access should call 1-866-234-2942.
The regular refund checks that were returned to the IRS average
$988. For New Mexicans, the average refund amount is $803. These
checks are resent as soon as taxpayers update their address.
Taxpayers can update their addresses with the “Where’s
My Refund?” tool on www.irs.gov.
It enables taxpayers to check the status of their refunds.
Taxpayers checking on a refund over the phone will be given instructions
on how to update their addresses. Taxpayers can access a telephone
version of “Where’s My Refund?” by calling 1-800-829-1954.
Taxpayers not sure of which type of check they may be due should
check on a potential economic stimulus check first because of the
looming deadline. See instructions above.
The vast majority of checks mailed out by the IRS reach their rightful
owner every year. Only a very small percent are returned by the
U.S. Postal Service as undeliverable.
Through September 2008, the government distributed 116 million
economic stimulus payments with only about 279,000 checks being
undeliverable. Meanwhile, the IRS has distributed more than 105
million regular refunds this year, with only about 104,000 being
undeliverable. In both cases, well under one percent of refunds
or stimulus checks were undeliverable.
The IRS encourages taxpayers to choose direct deposit when they
file their return because it puts an end to lost, stolen, or undeliverable
checks. Taxpayers can receive refunds directly into personal checking
or savings accounts. Direct deposit is available for filers of both
paper and electronic returns.
2009 inflation adjustments widen tax brackets
and expand tax benefits
For 2009, personal exemptions and standard deductions will rise
and tax brackets will widen because of inflation adjustments recently
announced by the Internal Revenue Service.
By law, the dollar amounts for a variety of tax provisions must
be revised each year to keep pace with inflation. As a result, more
than three dozen tax benefits, affecting virtually every taxpayer,
are being adjusted for 2009. Key changes affecting 2009 returns,
filed by most taxpayers in early 2010, include the following:
The value of each personal and dependency exemption, available
to most taxpayers, is $3,650, up $150 from 2008.
The new standard deduction is $11,400 for married couples filing
a joint return (up $500); $5,700 for singles and married individuals
filing separately (up $250); and $8,350 for heads of household (up
$350). Nearly two out of three taxpayers take the standard deduction,
rather than itemizing deductions, such as mortgage interest, charitable
contributions, and state and local taxes.
Tax-bracket thresholds increase for each filing status. For a married
couple filing a joint return, for example, the taxable-income threshold
separating the fifteen-percent bracket from the twenty-five-percent
bracket is $67,900, up from $65,100 in 2008.
The maximum earned income tax credit for low- and moderate-income
workers and working families with two or more children is $5,028,
up from $4,824. The income limit for the credit for joint return
filers with two or more children is $43,415, up from $41,646.
The annual gift exclusion rises to $13,000, up from $12,000 in
Revenue Procedure 2008-66 contains inflation adjustment items for
2009 and is available online at www.irs.gov.