Friday, December 16, 2011

IRS has $153 Million in Undelivered Refunds

A university committee was selecting a new dean. They had narrowed the candidates down to a mathematician, an economist and a tax lawyer. Each was asked this question during their interview: “How much is two plus two?”
The mathematician answered immediately, “Four.”
The economist thought for several minutes and finally answered, “Four, plus or minus one.”
Finally the tax lawyer stood up, peered around the room and motioned silently for the committee members to gather close to him. In a hushed, conspiratorial tone, he replied, “How much do you want it to be?”
In an annual reminder to taxpayers, the IRS announced November 30 that it has a total of $153.3 million in undeliverable refund checks for 99,123 taxpayers with mailing address errors. The average undelivered refund check was $1,547 this year.

Taxpayers who are missing a refund should check out the Where’s My Refund? tool on IRS.gov. The tool  provides the status of refunds and, in some cases, instructions on how to resolve delivery problems. Taxpayers can also access a telephone version of Where’s My Refund? by calling 1-800-829-1954.

Bottom Line

The IRS recommends e-file and Direct Deposit of refunds to avoid delivery problems (IR-2011-113).

PS

to acompany the joke at the top, here's my favorite involving a mathematician...
An engineer, a physicist, and a mathematician share a hotel room. Each falls asleep while smoking.
The engineer wakes up to discover his bed on fire. He grabs a trash can, fills it with water, puts out the fire, and goes back to sleep in a soggy bed.
The physicist wakes up with his bed on fire also. He sees the trash can, makes many calculations in his head, then fills the can with just enough water to perfectly extinguish the fire. He goes back to sleep in a warm, dry bed.
The mathematician wakes up with bed aflame. He sees the trash can and the sink. He concludes, "Ah ha, a solution exists!" and goes back to sleep in the burning bed.

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