Federal Tax Questions: What Is A Split Refund?

Here’s a federal tax question: What is a spit refund? A split refund is a procedure that allows an individual to break down his tax refund into several relative amount and deposit the money in different financial institutions in the country. The refund can be placed in up to 3 different bank accounts (checking and savings), or any other form of accounts such as an individual retirement arrangement, health savings, Archer MSA, Coverdell education savings account, or a Treasury Direct Online account.

Options to Receive the Refund Faster

There are three ways on how to get your refund faster. All you need to do is inform the Internal Revenue Service which account/s you want the money deposited. To immediately access the fund, you can request the IRS to:

  • direct deposit the money into one checking or savings accounts

  • direct deposit the fund into one or three of your existing US checking or savings accounts and split the total amount of the refund into how much you want to deposit in each account

  • send the refund in the mail using a paper check

How to Split the Refund

Apportioning the tax refund into one or three eligible bank accounts is very simple. The main thing the individual needs to do is to file and send the application to the IRS. He can send his request online or through the traditional mailing system. If the person wants to file online, he can access Form 8888 (Direct Deposit of Refund to More Than One Account) on the IRS website and fill it up completely as required. For individuals who prefer the postal mailing process, the same form must be used. The tax payers should download and print the form, provide the information, and mail the form to the IRS office.

Required Information in Filing a Split Refund

Using the Form 8888, the tax payer who wish to apply for a split refund needs to prepare and provide the following information:

  • routing numbers
  • checking and/or savings bank account numbers
  • amount of fund to be deposited in each account
  • social security number

The tax refund filer should double check the information he entered on the form, specifically, the routing and bank account numbers. Doing this will ensure that the figures written on the paper are correct which helps avoid problems and delays in releasing the fund.

Benefits of Splitting A Refund

The split refund program offers tax payers various advantages. First, the money deposited in the individual's checking account can be easily accessed in times he needs cash for emergency/unexpected circumstances. Second, keeping the other portion of the refund in his savings account assures the availability of funds for future use while it gains interest rate. Third, the split refund procedure uses direct deposit to dispense the fund to the qualified recipients, therefore, the money transfer is safe, efficient, and faster. Compared to refunds disposed through a paper check, refunds received through direct deposit can be accessed and used immediately after the amount is reflected on the accounts.

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