Average 2010 tax refund $3,003. Average 2010 tax refund is about $3,003 making it a 5 percent increase from the previous year. The Internet Revenue Service paid $328 billion, which is a 3 percent rise from 2009.
That comes out to $3,003 apiece, up 5% from the average refund of $2,859 taxpayers received in 2009, according the latest filing statistics from the IRS. The jump was one of the biggest in years, thanks in part to several tax credits introduced as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The Homebuyer Tax Credit — which gave buyers up to $8,000 for purchasing a home — was expanded to include more taxpayers.
Meanwhile, the refundable American Opportunity Credit helped more students and parents pay for college tuition and course materials. It temporarily replaced the $700 non-refundable Hope Credit and gave students with income of $80,000 or less a credit of up to $2,500 a year.
Refunds also likely received a boost from the sluggish unemployment picture, said Roberton Williams, a senior fellow at the Tax Policy Center. “Withholdings are based on the assumption that you are making the same amount of money the whole year,” he said. “So one of the things that really affects refunds is that if people only work part of the year, they typically have more withheld than they even need to pay their taxes. That’s a small benefit from being unemployed.”