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Thousands of Oklahomans yet to file for economic stimulus payments

Press Release_With little more than a week left before the October 15 deadline to file a 2007 federal income tax return, more than 63,000 Oklahoma Social Security and Veterans benefits recipients have yet to file to request an economic stimulus payment. 

October 15 is the filing deadline for these retirees and disabled veterans who normally don't file a tax return, but who may be eligible to receive a stimulus payment.  People must file a tax return in order to receive an economic stimulus payment, even if they normally are not required to file a return.

It's also the deadline for the approximately 110,000 Oklahomans who earlier this year received extensions to file their 2007 federal income tax returns.

Those 63,000+ Oklahomans are a part of the estimated 4.2 million people who receive certain Social Security benefits and 178,000 who receive certain Veterans Affairs benefits nationwide the IRS has yet to hear from.  The IRS has accounted for nearly 80 percent of the Social Security and Veterans Affairs beneficiaries initially identified as potentially eligible.

Two Oklahoma counties rank in the top 100 U.S. counties with benefits recipients yet to file.  Oklahoma County comes in at number 70, with about 11,000, and Tulsa County ranks number 81, with about 9,700.

There are benefits recipients yet to file in all 77 Oklahoma counties (see below).

"Don't let the economic stimulus payment pass you by," said IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman. "If you want the payment this year, you should file by October 15. We recognize that there may be older Americans and disabled veterans who still have not filed for their stimulus payment. If you know of a friend, neighbor or family members who may be in that situation, please give them a hand if they need it."

As of September 30, the IRS has issued $94.061 billion in economic stimulus payments to 115.957 million individuals and families.

For people who have no tax liability, as well as those who have no requirement to file a tax return because their income is too low or nontaxable, there is a stimulus payment potentially available of up to $300 ($600 for married couples) plus an additional $300 payment for each qualifying child. However, people in this situation must have at least $3,000 in qualifying income, which can be comprised of any combination of earned income, nontaxable combat pay, and certain benefits from Social Security, Veterans Affairs and Railroad Retirement.

For other eligible individuals, the Economic Stimulus Act of 2008 provides for stimulus payments of up to $600 ($1,200 for married couples) or the amount of the taxpayer's 2007 net income tax liability, whichever is less. There also is an additional $300 payment for each qualifying child.

By law, the IRS cannot issue any economic stimulus payments after December 31, 2008.  However, people who don't file a 2007 federal income tax return by October 15 may be eligible for a "Recovery Rebate" tax credit based upon their 2008 income when they file their 2008 federal income tax returns in 2009.  

For more information, visit and click on Don't Delay - File by Oct. 15 , or call the IRS "Rebate Hotline" toll-free, at (866) 234-2942.

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