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Old 03-12-2010, 07:20 PM
jackelope jackelope is offline
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Tax refund is bigger than expected; what should I do?

I filed my tax return a few weeks ago; Tennessee has no state income tax, so I filed a federal 1040EZ and that was it. I had only one W-2, and it was all pretty simple: standard deduction, etc. My calculations said I'd get a refund of $X.

Today I got a refund (via direct deposit) of approximately $X + $400.

I wasn't contacted at all, and I'm wondering what happened. I'm a bit apprehensive about spending the money, or rather getting accustomed to it (most of it's going into savings anyway, though I do have my eye on an Android phone).

Should I expect to get hit up by IRS goons, looking for their money back? Did my fairy godmother at IRS HQ redo my taxes for me and find something I'd missed? I've never heard of this happening before. Is it common?

Also, did I really manage to screw up a form so simple that they call it "EZ"?

(Note: I'm not looking for legal advice. I'm a lawyer myself, though I have no concept of the internal workings of the IRS. I'm just wondering what those in the know think might have happened here.)
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Old 03-12-2010, 07:22 PM
jackelope jackelope is offline
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Oops. I googled immediately after posting this and found the Making Work Pay Tax Credit. Mods, please feel free to close.

And yes, I did screw up a form so simple that it's called "EZ" in the title.
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Old 03-12-2010, 07:36 PM
dracoi dracoi is offline
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You can expect a letter from the IRS in two to three weeks explaining the change, but I'm sure you're right about it being the Making Work Pay credit. The IRS is very slow with mailed letters, so the direct deposit is generally completed before you're informed about why it was different. Heck, even if you get the refund via check, you'll often get the check before the explanation.
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Old 03-12-2010, 08:45 PM
jackelope jackelope is offline
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Thanks, dracoi. I'm impressed that the IRS did that, frankly. They could have kept my $400 and I would never have known.
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Old 03-12-2010, 08:55 PM
Sunspace Sunspace is online now
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Extra money? Got any debt to nuke?
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Old 03-12-2010, 09:01 PM
jackelope jackelope is offline
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I've got plenty of debt; alas, my debts (student loans, mainly) are of a size to make $400 look more like a spitball than a nuke.
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Old 03-12-2010, 09:26 PM
Sunspace Sunspace is online now
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Well, if you're paying things down in an orderly fashion, a bit of an emergency fund is not a bad idea either...

Last edited by Sunspace; 03-12-2010 at 09:26 PM..
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