The Importance of Filing Your Tax Return When Claiming Your Refund

The Importance of Filing Your Tax Return When Claiming Your Refund


If you have not yet filed your 2017 tax return and have a refund coming, time to claim that refund is running out! The IRS estimates that more than 1.35 million taxpayers have not filed their 2017 tax returns with approximately $1.3 billion of unclaimed refunds available for those taxpayers.


See Relax Tax’s Amending a Tax Return at


What is the deadline to file your tax return?

If you fall in the category mentioned above, you need to act quickly because the return must be filed by May 17, 2021 to claim a refund for 2017. Otherwise, the money becomes the property of the U.S. Treasury.

People stand to lose more than a refund of taxes withheld or paid during 2017  by failing to file a return. For example, many low- and moderate-income workers who haven’t filed for 2017 may qualify to claim the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). The EITC is a refundable credit that provides financial assistance to individuals and families with incomes below certain thresholds. In addition, taxpayers may also qualify for the refundable child and education credits.

When filing a 2017  return, the law requires that the return be properly addressed, mailed, and postmarked by May 17. There is no penalty for filing a late return that qualifies for a refund. 


These days the tax return is used for more than just collecting taxes. It has also become a tool for the government to provide social benefits. This article discusses the various reasons and resulting benefits available to you when you file, even if you are not required to, as you may be eligible for a refund of withholding or estimated payments or a refund as a result of a refundable tax credit or even a stimulus payment that you didn’t previously receive.

As a reminder, taxpayers seeking a 2017 refund should know that their checks will be held if they have not filed tax returns for 2018 and 2019. 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. 

Please give this office a call as soon as possible if you have not filed your 2017 return. Sufficient time is needed to prepare and print the return and for you to take it to the post office to send with proof of mailing. Give us a call at 551-249-1040.


Do you have some questions? Dennis Harabin at Relax Tax can answer them!


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