A:

When you file form 1040, 1040A, 1040EZ, 1040NR, 1040NR-EZ, 1040-SS or 1040-PR and you are owed a refund, the form gives you the option to apply your refund to next year’s estimated taxes, receive it as a check or receive it as a direct deposit to a single checking or savings account. However, if you’re owed a tax refund, you actually don’t have to receive it all as one check or as a single direct deposit to one bank account. If you check the box on your 1040 indicating that you want a split refund and file Form 8888, Allocation of Refund, you can divide your refund among several options.

You can ask the IRS to split your refund between two or three bank accounts with any U.S. financial institution that accepts electronic deposits (which don’t have to be at the same bank), and you don’t have to divide your refund evenly. You can also use all or part of your tax refund to purchase up to $5,000 in Series I savings bonds (zero-coupon, inflation-protected bonds) for yourself or for someone else. There is a $1 minimum for each direct deposit; savings bonds have a $50 minimum and must be purchased in $50 increments.

You cannot direct any part of your refund to someone else’s account, unless that person is your spouse and you’ve filed jointly. You also cannot receive part of your refund as a check and part as a direct deposit.

If you make a mistake in calculating your refund and the IRS catches it, it will add or subtract the difference from the last account you designate on form 8888. But if there is a mistake and you allocated part of your refund to I bonds, you’ll receive your entire refund as a check.

RELATED FAQS
  1. When should my tax refund arrive?

    Read about how long it takes the IRS to process your income tax return and what factors could delay receiving your tax refund. Read Answer >>
  2. Can the IRS withhold your tax refund?

    Learn about the instances in which the IRS can levy your federal and state income tax refunds, and find out how the levy ... Read Answer >>
  3. Is it necessary for my daughter to file a state return if no refund is expected or ...

    I was just wondering on behalf of my daughter who made under $9,200 in 2015, if a state return was war... Read Answer >>
  4. Can the IRS garnish your tax refund?

    Understand whether the IRS can legally garnish a person's tax returns. Learn the priority for garnishing wages for state ... Read Answer >>
  5. Which retirement plan should I enroll in?

    I currently work for a state office for South Carolina, and have the state retirement plan (SCRS). We will be moving back ... Read Answer >>
  6. Do these new SS rules apply to me?

    I am receiving survivor's Social Security as my husband has passed away.  ... Read Answer >>
Related Articles
  1. Personal Finance

    5 Ways To Receive Your Tax Refund

    Taxpayers in the U.S. can receive their income tax refund in many different forms - checks, debit cards, savings bonds and direct deposits. Find out which one is right for you.
  2. Personal Finance

    The First Thing You Should Do With Your Tax Refund

    Nobody likes to pay taxes, but everyone loves to get a tax refund. When the check arrives in the mail, it's hard to resist spending it on some indulgence.
  3. Personal Finance

    5 Ways To Double Your Tax Refund

    Many companies offer incentives that allow you to multiply your tax refund - at a price. Here are five of the more popular promotions this year.
  4. Personal Finance

    12 Reasons Your IRS Refund Was Late

    A tax refund can be a nice post-tax reward, but if it's taking too long to arrive, here are the most likely reasons for the hold-up and how to check on it.
  5. Retirement

    5 Top Tax Season Questions

    A tax pro answers questions she hears most often and quashes some myths.
  6. Personal Finance

    Tax Credits That Can Get You a Refund

    Here are a few of the credits that may result in a refund check, even if you owe no taxes this year.
  7. Personal Finance

    5 Smart Uses For Your Tax Refund

    Consider using the bulk of your refund to take care of long-term needs, like saving for retirement or college.
  8. Personal Finance

    Refund Anticipation Loans Generally A Ripoff

    These short-term loans can provide much-needed cash, but the instant payout comes at a cost.
  9. Personal Finance

    Avoid The Prepaid Tax Refund Debit Cards

    Here are reasons why you shouldn't get a prepaid card from TurboTax, Jackson Hewitt, TaxAct or H&R Block.
  10. Retirement

    5 Smart Ways To Use Your Tax Return

    This year, find out how to stretch your tax refund further to strengthen your future.
RELATED TERMS
  1. Crossover Refunding

    A local government's issuance of new municipal bonds (called ...
  2. Tax Refund

    A tax refund is a refund on taxes paid to an individual or household ...
  3. Intaxification

    The feeling of satisfaction and joy that a tax refund creates ...
  4. Refunded Bond

    Bonds that have their principle cash amount already held aside ...
  5. Form 1045: Application For Tentative Refund

    A tax form distributed by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) ...
  6. Form 1310: Statement Of Person Claiming Refund Due A Deceased Taxpayer

    A tax form distributed by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) ...
Trading Center