Investor Toolkit

Attention taxpayers: There are $1B in unclaimed refunds

Key Points
  • About one million taxpayers still have not filed their 2014 tax returns.
  • Unpaid refunds from 2014 total more than $1 billion, while the median potential refund is $847.
  • The final deadline for filing those late returns is April 17.
John Lund | Getty Images

If you're still procrastinating on filing your 2014 tax return, time is running out for you to collect your refund.

About one million taxpayers have yet to file a return for that year. Unpaid refunds from those returns total more than $1 billion, according to the Internal Revenue Service. The median refund is $847.

The deadline for filing late returns for 2014 is April 17. If you miss that deadline, any money that would have been refunded to you goes to the U.S. Treasury.

You may also be eligible for the earned income tax credit if you had low or moderate income. That credit was valued at up to $6,143 in 2014, according to the IRS.

Here’s why that tax refund might not be a good thing

Watch out for reasons that could prevent you from collecting your refund money.

If you have not filed tax returns for 2015 or 2016, your refund for 2014 may be held by the IRS.

Plus, your refund money could be used to pay debts owed to the IRS or state tax agency, such as unpaid child support or student loans.

Here are the states with the highest total potential refunds, excluding the earned income tax credit.

State-by-state estimates of 2014 income tax refunds

State or DistrictEstimated Number of IndividualsMedian Potential RefundTotal Potential Refunds
Texas108,100$899 $121,956,100
California93,600$785 $95,745,100
Florida69,800$865 $74,040,300
New York53,600$913 $60,135,600
Illinois39,500$895 $43,600,000
Pennsylvania39,300$907 $42,866,100
Ohio38,100$826 $38,956,700
Michigan34,100$845 $36,505,700
Georgia34,800$772 $35,006,000
New Jersey28,600$928 $32,452,500

Source: Source: Internal Revenue Service