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IRS says it still owes taxpayers $1.5 billion in 2019 refunds

The IRS says that there are still 1.5 million people who are owed a 2019 refund, resulting in nearly $1.5 billion in unclaimed refunds.
IRS 1040 form
Posted at 1:47 PM, Jun 09, 2023

The Internal Revenue Service said there remains an estimated $1.5 billion in unpaid refunds from 2019, and time is running out for taxpayers to claim those funds.

The IRS estimates that 1.5 million people in the U.S. who are owed a refund have yet to file a 2019 tax return. The IRS says the median refund in 2019 was $893.

Taxpayers have until July 17 to claim a refund.

"Time is running out for more than a million people to get their tax refunds for 2019," said IRS Commissioner Danny Werfel. "Many people may have overlooked filing a 2019 tax return due to the pandemic. We don't want people to miss their window to receive their refund. We encourage people to check their records and act quickly before the deadline. The IRS has several important ways that people can get help."

Pile of money

Where to find free money in every state

The unclaimed funds could come from a business or the government. Here is a list of where to find money that is owed to you.


Typically, taxpayers have three years to claim a refund. But with the COVID-19 pandemic, taxpayers were given an additional year to file and claim a refund. 

The law stipulates that refunds that are left unclaimed become the property of the U.S. Treasury. 

If you are unsure if you filed in 2019, you can file for a tax transcript through the IRS’ website. 

The IRS also has past-year forms on its website.