26 CFR § 301.6402-2 - Claims for credit or refund.

§ 301.6402-2 Claims for credit or refund.

(a) Requirement that claim be filed.

(1) Credits or refunds of overpayments may not be allowed or made after the expiration of the statutory period of limitation properly applicable unless, before the expiration of such period, a claim therefor has been filed by the taxpayer. Furthermore, under section 7422, a civil action for refund may not be instituted unless a claim has been filed within the properly applicable period of limitation.

(2) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of § 301.6091-1 (relating to hand-carried documents), if a taxpayer is required to file a claim for credit or refund using a particular form, then the claim, together with appropriate supporting evidence, shall be filed in a manner consistent with such form, form instructions, publications, or other guidance found on the IRS.gov Web site. If a taxpayer is filing a claim in response to an IRS notice or correspondence, then the claim must be filed in accordance with the specific instructions contained in the notice or correspondence regarding the manner of filing. Any other claim not described in the preceding sentences generally must be filed with the service center at which the taxpayer currently would be required to file a tax return for the type of tax to which the claim relates or via the appropriate electronic portal. For rules relating to interest in the case of credits or refunds, see section 6611. For rules treating timely mailing as timely filing, see section 7502. For rules relating to the time for filing a claim when the last day falls on Saturday, Sunday, or a legal holiday, see section 7503.

(b) Grounds set forth in claim.

(1) No refund or credit will be allowed after the expiration of the statutory period of limitation applicable to the filing of a claim therefor except upon one or more of the grounds set forth in a claim filed before the expiration of such period. The claim must set forth in detail each ground upon which a credit or refund is claimed and facts sufficient to apprise the Commissioner of the exact basis thereof. The statement of the grounds and facts must be verified by a written declaration that it is made under the penalties of perjury. A claim which does not comply with this paragraph will not be considered for any purpose as a claim for refund or credit.

(2) The IRS does not have the authority to refund on equitable grounds penalties or other amounts legally collected.

(c) Form for filing claim. If a particular form is prescribed on which the claim must be made, then the claim must be made on the form so prescribed. For special rules applicable to refunds of income taxes, see § 301.6402-3. For provisions relating to credits and refunds of taxes other than income tax, see the regulations relating to the particular tax. All claims by taxpayers for the refund of taxes, interest, penalties, and additions to tax that are not otherwise provided for must be made on Form 843, “Claim for Refund and Request for Abatement.”

(d) Separate claims for separate taxable periods. In the case of income and gift taxes, income tax withheld, taxes under the Federal Insurance Contributions Act, taxes under the Railroad Retirement Tax Act, and taxes under the Federal Unemployment Tax Act, a separate claim must be made for each return for each taxable period.

(e) Proof of representative capacity. If a return is filed by an individual and, after his death, a refund claim is filed by his legal representative, certified copies of the letters testamentary, letters of administration, or other similar evidence must be annexed to the claim, to show the authority of the legal representative to file the claim. If an executor, administrator, guardian, trustee, receiver, or other fiduciary files a return and thereafter a refund claim is filed by the same fiduciary, documentary evidence to establish the legal authority of the fiduciary need not accompany the claim, provided a statement is made in the claim showing that the return was filed by the fiduciary and that the latter is still acting. In such cases, if a refund is to be paid, letters testamentary, letters of administration, or other evidence may be required, but should be submitted only upon the receipt of a specific request therefor. If a claim is filed by a fiduciary other than the one by whom the return was filed, the necessary documentary evidence should accompany the claim. A claim may be executed by an agent of the person assessed, but in such case a power of attorney must accompany the claim.

(f) Mailing of refund check.

(1) Checks in payment of claims allowed will be drawn in the names of the persons entitled to the money and, except as provided in subparagraph (2) of this paragraph (f), the checks may be sent direct to the claimant or to such person in care of an attorney or agent who has filed a power of attorney specifically authorizing him to receive such checks.

(2) Checks in payment of claims which have either been reduced to judgment or settled in the course or as a result of litigation will be drawn in the name of the person or persons entitled to the money and will be sent to the Assistant Attorney General, Tax Division, Department of Justice, for delivery to the taxpayer or the counsel of record in the court proceeding.

(3) For restrictions on the assignment of claims, see section 3477 of the Revised Statutes (31 U.S.C. 203).

(g) Misdirected direct deposit refund -

(1) Definition. The term misdirected direct deposit refund includes any refund of an overpayment of tax that is disbursed as a direct deposit but is not deposited into the account designated on the claim for refund to receive the direct deposit refund.

(2) Procedures for reporting a misdirected direct deposit refund -

(i) In general. A taxpayer or a taxpayer's authorized representative may report to the IRS that the taxpayer never received a direct deposit refund and request a replacement refund. The report must include the name of the taxpayer who requested the refund, the taxpayer identification number of the taxpayer, the taxpayer's mailing address, the type of return to which the refund is related, the account number and routing number that the taxpayer requested the refund be directly deposited into, and any other information necessary to locate the misdirected direct deposit refund.

(ii) How to report a misdirected direct deposit refund. A reporting described in paragraph (g)(2)(i) of this section may be made in the following ways:

(A) By calling the IRS;

(B) On the form prescribed by the IRS and in accordance with the applicable publications, instructions, or other appropriate guidance;

(C) By contacting the Office of the Taxpayer Advocate by telephone, by mail, facsimile, or in person; or

(D) By submitting the appropriate form in person at a Taxpayer Assistance Center.

(3) Procedures for coordination with financial institutions -

(i) Identification of the account that received the misdirected direct deposit refund. If the IRS receives a report described in paragraph (g)(2)(ii) of this section, the IRS will confirm that the overpayment was issued as a direct deposit. The IRS will confirm that the overpayment was not credited or offset pursuant to the law in effect immediately prior to the direct deposit being disbursed. If the direct deposit described in the report was issued, the IRS will initiate a refund trace to request the assistance of the Department of the Treasury's Bureau of the Fiscal Service. In accordance with its own procedures, the Bureau of the Fiscal Service coordinates with the financial institution that holds directly or indirectly the deposit account into which the refund was made, requesting from the financial institution such information as is necessary to identify whether the financial institution received the refund; whether the financial institution returned, or will return, the refund to the IRS, or if no funds are available for return; whether a deposit was made into the account designated on the claim for refund; and the identity of the deposit account owner to whom the deposit was disbursed.

(ii) Coordination to recover the amounts transferred. Recovery of the misdirected direct deposit refund from a financial institution shall follow the procedures established by the Bureau of the Fiscal Service. The Bureau of the Fiscal Service shall request the return of the misdirected direct deposit refund from the financial institution that received it. The IRS may contact the financial institution directly to recover the misdirected direct deposit refund.

(4) Issuance of replacement refund. When the IRS has determined that a misdirected direct deposit refund has occurred, the IRS will issue a replacement refund in the full amount of the refund that was misdirected. The replacement refund may be issued as a direct deposit or as a paper check sent to the taxpayer's last known address.

(5) Applicability of this paragraph (g) to missing refunds. The provisions of paragraphs (g)(2) through (g)(3)(i) of this section should be used for any refund that was disbursed as a direct deposit and that the taxpayer reports as missing. For example, although a refund that was deposited into an incorrect bank account because the taxpayer transposed two digits in their bank account number is not considered to be a misdirected direct deposit refund, the provisions of paragraphs (g)(2) through (g)(3)(i) of this section should be used. If the application of these procedures results in an amount recovered by the IRS, the recovered amount will be refunded or credited as allowed by law.

(h) Applicability dates. Paragraphs (a)(2), (b)(2), (c), and (d) of this section apply to claims for credit or refund filed on or after July 24, 2015. Paragraphs (a)(1), (b)(1), (e), and (f) of this section apply to claims for credit or refund filed before, on or after July 24, 2015. Paragraph (g) of this section applies to reports described in paragraph (g)(2)(ii) of this section made after December 22, 2020.

[32 FR 15241, Nov. 3, 1967, as amended by T.D. 7008, 34 FR 3673, Mar. 1, 1969; T.D. 7188, 37 FR 12794, June 29, 1972; T.D. 7410, 41 FR 11020, Mar. 16, 1976; T.D. ATF-33, 41 FR 44038, Oct. 6, 1976; T.D. 7484, 42 FR 22143, May 2, 1977; T.D. 9727, 80 FR 43951, July 24, 2015; T.D. 9940, 85 FR 83447, Dec. 22, 2020]