Per the IRS, in 2011 approximately 1 million tax returns represented $1 billion in unclaimed refunds. As unlikely as this sounds, losing a refund could happen to you or someone you know. Here are some common causes of missing out on your full refund.
You can receive your income tax refund in several ways: (1) direct deposit into a single checking or savings account, (2) direct deposit split into up to three different accounts in up to three different U.S. financial institutions, (3) via a paper check, or (4) purchasing up to $5,000 U.S. Series I savings bonds. Split deposits need not be in equal amounts, though buying savings bonds must be done in multiples of $50. You can't split your refund between a direct deposit and a paper check. For direct deposits, verify that your financial institution accepts such deposits, and verify account and routing numbers.