I used TurboTax to prepare and e-file my federal and New York State tax returns. I owed money on both and I elected to have the amounts debited from a savings account. When the transactions never appeared I realized that I had given the number of an account that has been closed for a while. Whoops! Should I proactively contact the IRS and the NYS Department of Taxation and Finance, or will they just send me a bill?

1 Answer 1


They will not send a bill, though there's a chance they will eventually send an accusatory letter. You must proactively pay your taxes.

The simplest route is to send a check to each taxing authority with the respective full amounts due. I wouldn't bother calling them. You could also file amended returns with each containing the correct information. As a general rule, tax advisors tend to counsel against giving bank account information to the IRS for payment purposes (as opposed to refund purposes), both to protect the timing of payment and to make it slightly more difficult for them to seize or lien your account.

If you choose to send a check, you can use Form 1040-V and NY Form IT-201-V. Please triple check your Social Security Number matches your tax return SSN, so they correctly credit you for payment. You may include an explanation of the closed account if you are feeling either fearful or contrite, but if the amount due is paid in full, then neither taxing authority should really care about your error.

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    Second this. I wrote a check to the IRS off the wrong account (although some confusing info from the bank website played a role in my error.) I discovered the error before the IRS got around to squawking and sent them the money. The fact that I had fixed the mistake before they squawked was enough to get them to waive the fees that would normally have come with the bounced check. Apr 9, 2014 at 19:46
  • @LorenPechtel- Good catch on your part. Payment prior to April 15th will generally avoid the penalties in any case, so OP still has almost a week.
    – NL7
    Apr 9, 2014 at 22:37
  • @bdesnam I'll also add that if you send the check and have them cash it before the date you asked them to do the withdrawal - they won't even try the bank account. So hurry up.
    – littleadv
    Apr 10, 2014 at 0:10
  • @NL7 I still had to pay the interest for a late payment, what they waived was the bounced check penalty. They had bounced it (it was the bank's notice about the bounce that let me know what was up) and I promptly sent a replacement. Apr 10, 2014 at 0:35

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