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What has the IRS done for you lately?

February 23, 2009

By Maggie Williams

irsThe United States Internal Revenue Service, that bureaucracy rich government agency, despised by many revered by few, just confounded me.

I did my taxes early this year because I was expecting a sizable refund since I left my job last July and prior to that, my withholdings were based on being paid for the full year.  As I completed my taxes, I calculated that I would receive a sizable refund.  I attached my W2, sealed it, stamped it, and sent it off to the IRS.

Yesterday, I received a letter from the IRS that began:

We are writing to you because there is an error on your 2008 Federal Income Tax Return.

Oh joy, now what, I said.  Well, joy is not the exact word I used.  The letter went on to say they recomputed my recovery rebate credit, blah, blah.  I didn’t know what that was.  I finally noticed the Amount of Refund box and the total was about $600 higher than what I had calculated.  OK,  joy now seems to be an appropriate word.

It said that if I agree with the change, I need do nothing.  Well how kind is that?  The letter even went on to let me know who to contact should I disagree with the change they made.  Thanks IRS, but no thanks.  There was another page that said if I was affected by the recent disaster in my area and needed tax relief, do this or that…

I’m not aware of a recent disaster in my area and I didn’t know what a recovery rebate  credit was, but I like it.  Am I just out of touch or what?

I’ve since looked it up and the recovery rebate credit is a:

one-time benefit for people who didn’t receive the full economic stimulus payment last year and whose circumstances may have changed, making them eligible now for some or all of the unpaid portion

Apparently I didn’t qualify last year but now I do.  I don’t know what the limits are but you should check into this, you may qualify.  Find out more information from the IRS.

Today, I was surprised to find my refund check in the mail, for the corrected amount.  How about that?  And just to let you all know, I’ve been doing my best to stimulate the economy, but it’s a tough job, I can’t do it alone.   I need some help please because I’m running out of money, so get out there and invest and spend; go forth and… and, well… you know, stimulate.

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