If you requested your tax refund mailed to you but haven’t received it yet, it may have been returned to the IRS due to an incorrect mailing address. The IRS seeks to return undelivered refund checks to taxpayers. There’s an easy way to find out. Simply go to the “Where’s My Refund?” tool on IRS.gov or access the telephone version of “Where’s My Refund” by calling 1-800-829-1954. You’ll need to provide your Social Security number, filing status and the exact amount of your refund.
If you changed your address after filing your return, you should notify the post office that services your old address. While the IRS does use the Postal Service’s change of address files to update taxpayer addresses, it’s still a good idea to notify the IRS directly. Because not all post offices forward government checks, notifying the post office that services your old address ensures that your mail will be forwarded, but not necessarily your refund check. To change your address with the IRS, complete a Form 8822, Change of Address and send it to the address shown on the form. You may download Form 8822 from IRS.gov or order them by calling 1-800-TAX-FORM (1-800-829-3676).
If you filed a joint return and you and/or your spouse have since established separate residences, you both should notify the IRS of your new addresses.
Nearly three-quarters of all individual income tax filers claim a refund on their annual tax return. Although the vast majority of those refunds are issued as direct deposits, nearly 30 million taxpayers request paper refund checks. The IRS recommends filing tax returns electronically and using direct deposit. Electronic filing eliminates the risk of lost returns and reduces errors on tax returns that can cause refund delays. Direct deposit prevents the possibility a check being returned to the IRS as undeliverable and ends the danger of paper checks being lost or stolen.
Taxpayers should be aware that the IRS does not initiate contact with taxpayers by e-mail. E-mail informing taxpayers of pending tax refunds and asking for personal information are phishing scams. The agency urges taxpayers receiving such messages not to release any personal information, reply, open any attachments or click on any links to avoid malicious code that can infect their computers.
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