Average IRS Refund This Year About $3K, Chief Says

By: AP
By: AP

WASHINGTON (AP) -- That nice Internal Revenue Service refund check many families eagerly await this time of year is down slightly from 2011 but not too shabby: An average of about $3,000.

IRS chief Douglas H. Shulman has told a House subcommittee that through March 10, his agency issued 59.2 million refunds totaling $174.4 billion. That compares to 59 million refunds totaling $178.3 billion a year ago.

Based on those figures, this year's checks average $2,946, down slightly from last year's $3,022.

Shulman also told the House panel that through March 10, the IRS has processed almost 71 million individual returns, a small increase.

Nearly 26 million filers prepared their own electronic returns, an 11 percent jump from 2011.

And the agency has directly deposited 51 million refunds to taxpayers, up 3 percent.


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  • by Daniel on Mar 22, 2012 at 12:13 PM
    HA HA HA....The unemployment rate is less than 9% statistically and about 14% actually. That leaves 1/3 of the total population that don't fall into your argument. Also welfare recipients don't get W-2's for their benefits of file 1040's with the IRS. Try again, genius.
  • by M on Mar 22, 2012 at 11:34 AM
    What am I doing wrong?! I pay taxes, don't make much at all and still don't get anywhere near 3k in a refund. Ugh, guess I'm just not quite poor (or rich) enough.
  • by Sure on Mar 22, 2012 at 11:31 AM
    ...but state refunds are down $3k to help keep the people's money from them...
  • by easterner Location: Pueblo on Mar 22, 2012 at 11:21 AM
    You are, of course, assuming that they're employed. As for sales tax, etc., if they're living on the public dole, that's MY money.
  • by Daniel on Mar 22, 2012 at 11:02 AM
    They still pay Soc. Sec., Medicare, property, sales, gas, and many others. The only tax that they get a break on is FICA. That's because they live at or below the poverty line. Get your facts straight.
  • by easterner Location: Pueblo on Mar 22, 2012 at 10:33 AM
    Breaks my heart that the 47% of people who don't pay taxes are having to suffer such heartbreak.
    • reply
      by jazzcat on Mar 22, 2012 at 11:48 AM in reply to easterner
      Millions of people overpay each year 'just to be safe' (i.e. they can't reliably predict their tax liability from year to year). Every spring, those people are entitled to a portion of their money back. How exactly does that equate to not paying taxes?
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