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$1.1 Billion in Unclaimed Tax Refunds -- Could Some Be Yours?

Unclaimed government moneyThe IRS has announced that there is $1.1 billion in previous unclaimed tax refunds waiting for nearly 1.1 million people who did not file a federal income tax return for 2007. The IRS estimates that half of these potential 2007 refunds amount to at least $640.To get your money, you have to be proactive. The IRS won't send you a tax refund if you haven't filed a federal income tax return. Many taxpayers may not realize that they might qualify for a refund because they erroneously believe that they did not make enough money. However, some taxpayers may be eligible for refundable credits.

A popular -- but still underutilized -- refundable credit is the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). The EITC helps individuals and families whose incomes are below certain thresholds, which in 2007 were $39,783 for those with two or more children, $35,241 for people with one child, and $14,590 for those with no children.

Other credits may also apply, such as the Making Work Pay Credit. The Making Work Pay Credit offers a flat credit of up to $400 for individual taxpayers and up to $800 for taxpayers who are married but filing jointly.

Refunds may also be due to taxpayers who might have too much withholding. This can happen when taxpayers claim too few exemptions on their form W-9. Form W-9 can be particularly confusing for taxpayers with more than one job or for married couples who both work.

If you're not sure whether you would be eligible for a refund, consider filing a return. If it turns out that you're due a refund, there's no penalty for filing late. Of course, remember that your 2007 refund will be held if you have not filed federal income tax returns for 2008 and 2009. Your refund may also be held if you're subject to offset for unpaid taxes, child support or federal debts.

The last day to file and receive a refund for 2007 is April 18, 2011. After that date, any unclaimed money will be returned to the U.S. Treasury.

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The total amount of tax you pay reaches far beyond what you owe the federal government. Depending on where you live, most likely you're required to pay additional taxes, including property and sales tax. The disparity between the amount of tax you pay in a low-tax city and that in a high-tax city can be dramatic. Living in any of these 10 cities could save you a bundle, although the exact amount may fluctuate based on your income and lifestyle choices.

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Great Ways to Get Charitable Tax Deductions

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A Freelancer's Guide to Taxes

Freelancing certainly has its benefits, but it can result in a few complications come tax time. The Internal Revenue Service considers freelancers to be self-employed, so if you earn income as a freelancer you must file your taxes as a business owner. While you can take additional deductions if you are self-employed, you'll also face additional taxes in the form of the self-employment tax. Here are things to consider as a freelancer when filing your taxes.

Tax Deductions for Voluntary Interest Payments on Student Loans

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Betty Wallace

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July 01 2013 at 6:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply