Call for Refund On Phone Service Excise Taxes
You talk on the telephone, right? You can now claim a one-time deduction for those of you who paid taxes on landline, wireless or Internet phone services.
Credit this tip to Black Enterprise magazine, which is where we first read about this one-time tax refund for previously collected federal excise taxes on long-distance or bundled phone service. The refund is due because of a federal court decision that successfully challenged these excise taxes on long-distance calls, as well as taxes on plans that do not differentiate between long-distance and local calls.
According to the IRS this refund will be the most far-reaching in IRS history: more than 160 million filers may request it.
You have a choice, according to the IRS. You can take a standard refund amount of between $30 and $60, depending on the total number of exemptions claimed on your 2006 tax return. That eliminates the need to locate old phone bills. Or you can locate your bills and use the actual amount.
Even if you don't need to file a return, you can still claim the refund by attaching a Form 8913 to Form 1040EZ-T.
The IRS is already worrying about the potential for fraud, and has all sorts of tips to avoid getting ripped off. Don't believe people who try to convince you that the IRS will refund your entire phone bill. The refund is one-time only, and just for this specific excise tax on long-distance services. The IRS website has lots of links to specific forms and additional details.