Mon09012014

Business & Real Estate

State tax board aims to return unclaimed refunds

The California Franchise Tax Board alerted taxpayers last week that it is holding more than $16 million in returned state income tax refunds.

In 2013, the U.S. Postal Service returned nearly 48,000 personal income tax refunds, ranging from $1 to $54,000. The vast majority of refunds, nearly 45,000, are for $1,000 or less. Taxpayers who moved and failed to update their addresses are the main reason refunds are returned. Overall, the Franchise Tax Board issued more than 10.7 million refunds worth more than $10.5 billion as of Dec. 31.

Taxpayers expecting a state refund or unsure if they received their refund can access the tax board’s Check Your Refund Status service online. The service is available in English and Spanish. Taxpayers may also call (800) 852-5711 to check on the status of their refunds.

The Franchise Tax Board encourages taxpayers to use direct deposit when filing future tax returns. Direct deposit is a fast and secure method to receive tax refunds within days rather than waiting weeks for a paper refund, according to officials. Last year, more than 6 million California taxpayers received more than $6.2 billion directly into their bank accounts through direct deposit.

Taxpayers who have moved should update their address information via the Access Your Account feature on the tax board’s website. The board reissues returned refunds automatically once a new address is received.

For more information, visit taxes.ca.gov.

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