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WASHINGTON — Refunds totaling more than $1 billion may be waiting for one million people who did not file a federal income tax return for 2008, the Internal Revenue Service announced today. However, to collect the money, a return for 2008 must be filed with the IRS no later than Tuesday, April 17, 2012.

The IRS estimates that half of these potential 2008 refunds are $637 or more.

Some people may not have filed because they had too little income to require filing a tax return even though they had taxes withheld from their wages or made quarterly estimated payments. In cases where a return was not filed, the law provides most taxpayers with a three-year window of opportunity for claiming a refund. If no return is filed to claim a refund within three years, the money becomes property of the U.S. Treasury.

For 2008 returns, the window closes on April 17, 2012. The law requires that the return be properly addressed, mailed and postmarked by that date. There is no penalty for filing a late return qualifying for a refund.

The IRS reminds taxpayers seeking a 2008 refund that their checks may be held if they have not filed tax returns for 2009 and 2010. In addition, the refund will be applied to any amounts still owed to the IRS, and may be used to offset unpaid child support or past due federal debts such as student loans.

By failing to file a return, people stand to lose more than refunds of taxes withheld or paid during 2008. Some people, especially those who did not receive an economic stimulus payment in 2008, may qualify for the Recovery Rebate Credit. In addition, many low-and moderate-income workers may not have claimed the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). The EITC helps individuals and families whose incomes are below certain thresholds. The thresholds for 2008 were:

  • $38,646 ($41,646 if married filing jointly) for those with two or more qualifying children,
  • $33,995 ($36,995 if married filing jointly) for people with one qualifying child, and
  • $12,880 ($15,880 if married filing jointly) for those with no qualifying children.

For more information, visit the EITC Home Page on IRS.gov.

Current and prior year tax forms and instructions are available on the Forms and Publications page of IRS.gov or by calling toll-free 800-TAX-FORM (800-829-3676). Taxpayers who are missing Forms W-2, 1098, 1099 or 5498 for 2008, 2009 or 2010 should request copies from their employer, bank or other payer. If these efforts are unsuccessful, taxpayers can get a free transcript showing information from these year-end documents by ordering it on IRS.gov, filing Form 4506-T, or by calling 800-908-9946.

TaxACT offers online and download options for previous year returns. You can prepare and print a 2008 return using TaxACT Online Deluxe or by downloading TaxACT Deluxe for just $12.95. Start a 2008 online return or order your software now.

Individuals Who Did Not File a 2008 Return with a Potential Refund

State Individuals Median Potential Refund Total Potential Refunds ($000)*
Alabama 18,400 $641 $15,738
Alaska 5,800 $641 $5,952
Arizona 29,000 $558 $24,913
Arkansas 9,600 $620 $8,152
California 122,500 $595 $112,201
Colorado 20,500 $589 $18,909
Connecticut 12,500 $697 $13,893
Delaware 4,200 $644 $3,784
District of Columbia 4,000 $642 $3,791
Florida 70,400 $650 $66,974
Georgia 35,800 $581 $30,661
Hawaii 7,600 $714 $8,307
Idaho 4,700 $541 $3,878
Illinois 40,800 $692 $40,712
Indiana 21,800 $664 $19,590
Iowa 10,600 $658 $9,295
Kansas 11,500 $631 $10,084
Kentucky 12,300 $640 $10,501
Louisiana 20,500 $662 $18,859
Maine 4,000 $579 $3,248
Maryland 24,600 $641 $22,591
Massachusetts 23,900 $699 $22,957
Michigan 33,300 $660 $30,903
Minnesota 15,200 $584 $12,772
Mississippi 9,900 $591 $8,254
Missouri 21,600 $593 $18,213
Montana 3,600 $599 $3,192
Nebraska 5,100 $623 $4,371
Nevada 14,500 $619 $13,381
New Hampshire 4,300 $733 $4,518
New Jersey 31,300 $716 $31,185
New Mexico 8,000 $611 $7,420
New York 60,300 $686 $61,240
North Carolina 30,800 $558 $24,997
North Dakota 2,000 $625 $1,895
Ohio 36,400 $622 $31,018
Oklahoma 16,800 $620 $14,787
Oregon 18,500 $527 $14,819
Pennsylvania 38,700 $695 $35,565
Rhode Island 3,400 $674 $3,040
South Carolina 12,200 $547 $10,158
South Dakota 2,300 $669 $2,234
Tennessee 18,400 $626 $16,130
Texas 96,200 $689 $97,057
Utah 7,800 $536 $6,676
Vermont 1,700 $647 $1,410
Virginia 30,800 $624 $28,670
Washington 29,900 $705 $32,138
West Virginia 4,300 $687 $4,068
Wisconsin 14,100 $592 $11,885
Wyoming 2,600 $773 $2,919
Grand Total 1,089,000 $637 $1,009,905

*Excluding the Earned Income Tax Credit and other credits.

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Upcoming Tax Dates

March 2All businesses
File information returns (for example, Forms 1099) for certain payments you made during 2014.

March 2Farmers & fishermen
File your 2014 income tax return (Form 1040) and pay any tax due - Details

March 2Payers of gambling winnings.
File Form 1096 along with Copy A of all the Forms W2G you issued for 2014. If you file Forms W2G electronically, your due date for filing them with the IRS will be extended to March 31. The due date for giving the recipient these forms remains February 2.

March 2 All employers
File Form W3, Transmittal of Wage and Tax Statements, along with Copy A of all the Forms W2 you issued for 2014. If you file Forms W2 electronically, your due date for filing them with the SSA will be extended to March 31. The due date for giving the recipient these forms remains February 2.

March 2 Large food and beverage establishment employers
File Form 8027, Employer's Annual Information Return of Tip Income and Allocated Tips. Use Form 8027T, Transmittal of Employer's Annual Information Return of Tip Income and Allocated Tips, to summarize and transmit Forms 8027 if you have more than one establishment. If you file Forms 8027 electronically, your due date for filing them with the IRS will be extended to March 31.

March 2 Wagering tax
File Form 730 and pay the tax on wagers accepted during January.

March 2 Heavy highway vehicle use tax
File Form 2290 and pay the tax for vehicles first used in January.

March 10 Employees who work for tips
If you received $20 or more in tips during February, report them to your employer - Details

March 11 Communications and air transportation taxes under the alternative method.
Deposit the tax included in amounts billed or tickets sold during the first 15 days of February.

March 13 Regular method taxes
Deposit the tax for the last 13 days of February.

March 16 Corporations
File a 2014 calendar year income tax return (Form 1120) and pay any tax due - Details

March 16 S Corporations
File a 2014 calendar year income tax return (Form 1120S) and pay any tax due - Details

March 16 S Corporation election
File Form 2553, Election by a Small Business Corporation, to elect to be treated as an S corporation beginning with calendar year 2015. If Form 2553 is filed late, S corporation treatment will begin with calendar year 2016.

March 16 Electing larger partnerships
Provide each partner with a copy of Schedule K1 (Form 1065B), Partner's Share of Income (Loss) From an Electing Large Partnership, or a substitute Schedule K1. This due date applies even if the partnership requests an extension of time to file the Form 1065B by filing Form 7004

March 16 Social security, Medicare, and withheld income tax
If the monthly deposit rule Page 6 Publication 509 (2015) applies, deposit the tax for payments in February.

March 16 Nonpayroll withholding
If the monthly deposit rule applies, deposit the tax for payments in February.

March 25 Communications and air transportation taxes under the alternative method.
Deposit the tax included in amounts billed or tickets sold during the last 14 days of February.

March 27 Regular method taxes
Deposit the tax for the first 15 days of March.

March 31 Electronic filing of Forms W2
File copies of all the Forms W2 you issued for 2014. This due date applies only if you electronically file.

March 31 Electronic filing of Forms W2G
File copies of all the Forms W2G you issued for 2014. This due date applies only if you electronically file.

March 31 Electronic filing of Forms 8027
File Forms 8027 for 2014. This due date applies only if you electronically file.

March 31 Wagering tax
File Form 730 and pay the tax on wagers accepted during February.

March 31 Heavy highway vehicle use tax
File Form 2290 and pay the tax for vehicles first used in February.

March 31 Electronic filing of Forms 1097, 1098, 1099, 3921, 3922, and W2G.
File Forms 1097, 1098, 1099, 3921, 3922, and W2G with the IRS. This due date applies only if you file electronically. Otherwise, see March 2. The due date for giving the recipient these forms generally remains February 2. View More Tax Dates