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Does IRS owe you for 2013? Better check now

If you worked in 2013, but didn’t make enough to require that you file a federal tax return, it’s likely that the IRS has some money waiting for you.

Speaking at the Savannah Chamber’s SMART lunch Tuesday, local tax attorney Jeffrey Williamson said the IRS is sitting on more than $1 billion in unclaimed refunds for an estimated one million taxpayers who didn’t file a return in 2013.

About half of those returns are worth more than $760, according to the IRS.

But, Williamson cautioned, time is running out to claim that money.

“There are lots of people who work but don’t have to file a return,” he said. “Students, for example, who only work part-time or part of the year often fall below the income threshold required for filing.

“But, if taxes were withheld, they may be due a refund.”

In Georgia alone, 34,400 taxpayers are due more than $32 million, with the median potential refund at $671.

Some taxpayers could also qualify for certain tax credits, such as the Earned Income Tax Credit, but they would only get that if they filed a tax return.

Although 2013 filing dates are long gone, the law provides most taxpayers with a three-year window in which to claim a refund, Williamson said. For 2013, that window closes April 18.

“If you think you have a refund due, you need to file a 2013 federal tax return and make sure it is postmarked by the 18th,” he said, adding that there is no penalty for filing a late return for those receiving refunds.

However, if taxpayers have not filed returns for 2014 and/or 2015, the IRS may hold the 2013 refund until it determines no federal or state taxes are due for those years.

Refunds can also be held to offset unpaid child support or past due federal loans, such as student loans.

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To learn more about unclaimed refunds or get the current and past year tax forms and instructions, go to IRS.gov.

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In Case You Missed It