IRS eager to deliver checks

It turns out the check was in the mail.

Carolinas residents are missing out on more than $11.6 million in 17,500 IRS tax refunds and economic stimulus checks that were returned as undeliverable, the agency said Thursday.

The Internal Revenue Service released a list of people still owed checks.

Nationwide, stimulus checks totaling about $163 million and regular refunds of about $103million have not been able to get to the right recipient because of address errors.

In Mecklenburg County, the average stimulus check was worth $569 and the average refund was worth $1,064, IRS spokesman Mark Hanson said. Across the region, Chester County, S.C., had the highest stimulus check average, at $723, while Union County had the highest refund average with $1,913.

Taxpayers due a stimulus check must update their addresses with the IRS by Nov. 28, the agency said. By law, those checks must be sent out by Dec. 31, although Hanson said people may seek to get a rebate recovery credit when they file taxes next year.

Undeliverable checks averaged $583 nationwide.

Regular refunds that were returned averaged $988.

People have three years to claim their money or the funds return to the U.S. Treasury, Hanson said.

The IRS sends out the checks once the address is updated; nationwide, well under 1 percent of all checks could not be delivered, according to the agency.

The list the IRS released could include names of people due refunds from the past three years. And there also may be duplicate names on the lists, the IRS said.