Washington (Feb. 7, 2003) -- Unclaimed refunds worth more than $2.5 billion await about 1.9 million people who failed to file a 1999 income tax return, the Internal Revenue Service announced Thursday. However, in order to collect the money, a return must be filed with an IRS office no later than April 15, 2003.

The IRS estimates that about half of those who could claim refunds would receive more than $511. Some individuals may have had taxes withheld from their wages but had too little income to require filing a tax return. Others may not have had any tax withheld but would be eligible for the refundable Earned Income Tax Credit.

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