Sunday, April 20, 2008

God Bless the USA

I e-filed my taxes a couple weeks ago. After periodically checking the status, I was pleased to see "direct-deposited" come up. After a week of checking my bank account and finding no such deposit, I was not so pleased. Against my better judgement, I called the IRS "refund hotline". After being on hold for 20 minutes with classical music so loud I think my ear started bleeding, here is the gist of my conversation (and this is for real):

"Internal Revenue Service, Representative # (whatever) here, how may I help you?"

"Yeah, your website says my refund was deposited over a week ago, but it never showed up in my checking account."

"Have you called our refund hotline, sir?"

"I thought that's what this is."

"Oh, okay. Social security number please."

(Gave her my info.)

"It looks like we tried to deposit it, but your bank rejected it. Did you give us the right number?"

"I checked the number several times. I know I put the right one on there."

"Well, we're showing a 5-digit account number."

"Yeah, that's not right. Can we just fix the number so you can try depositing it again?"

"It looks like it's scheduled to be mailed on April 25th."

"Oh, okay. I guess that would be fine."

"We have you down at P.O. Box (whatever)."

"Uhhh.... that can't be right. I've never had a P.O. Box."

"It's in Spirit Lake, Idaho."

"Oh, well, my ex lives in Spirit Lake... but I'm not sure why you would have her address for me."

"Well, let's take a look here... (long pause)... have you done a change of address with the post office recently?"

"Yeah, but not to Spirit Lake! I think she may have done one with my name on it, but I did one too. Can't I just get it mailed to the address on my return?"

"For that, you'd have to fill out change-of-address form 8822 and mail it in."

"I don't want to change my address. I want it mailed to the address on my tax return."

"You'll have to fill out the form, sir, and mail it in."

"By the time I do that and get it to you, it'll probably already be in the mail."

"That's a possibility."

"Are you sure I can't just fix the checking account number?"

"Well, let me check a few things here..." (EXTREMELY long pause)...

"Are you still there?"

"Yes, my computer just locked up."

"Oh, okay." (an even LONGER long pause)....

"Did you get it back up?"

"No, it's locked up, and only a supervisor can unlock it."

"Oh. So where does that leave us?"

"It's getting mailed to P.O. Box (whatever) on April 25th."

"Fine. I guess I'll just call back if my ex doesn't get my refund."

End of transmission.

I love how the government takes something that already sucks and makes it as complicated as possible. Crap, I keep forgetting - I work for the government. Never mind.


Anonymous said...

my husband moved out last march and our mail is STILL screwed up.

I get his mail sometimes, he gets my mail, and a few things have totally disappeared! (like a package of homemade jam from a friend)

good luck!!!

Anonymous said...

at least you didn't have to talk with someone in India who barely speaks

Anonymous said...

Abolish the IRS, immediately!

Anonymous said...

All you people out there in, (government entity here) , your screwing it up here for the people that's in the

North Idaho Skinny said...

Hey your tax check isn't here yet, but I did get a copy of your Good Sam RV magazine.

The New Arch Druid's take on the news said...

Glad I stopped by and checked this out. Sad but funny. Too bad we can't collectively sic the IRS on credit card companies that deliberately screw up with your payments so that they can get more of your money. At least the gvt only $%&*ed up not deliberately screwed up. Good for a laugh.