It may not be commonly known, but if you're absolutely positive that you will be owed a refund on your taxes, you won't get in trouble with the IRS if you miss Tuesday's filing deadline. The IRS, of course, is more eager to collect money than to find the people to whom it owes money.
But waiting past the deadline to file your return may be a gamble.
If it turns out that you do actually owe money, you will be faced with fines, for both failing to file on time and failing to pay on time.
And one of those penalties will continue to grow, 5% for each month after the deadline that you are late.
Now, if you are owed a refund that you've never collected, after three years, it's no longer yours and the IRS can reclaim your refund.
Apparently U.S. taxpayers are leaving some real money on the table. The IRS says Americans left a total of $760 million in unclaimed tax refunds in 2011. And that means that after Apr. 15, those refunds can no longer be claimed.
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