CP32A Notice: What Happened to My Refund Check?

Content provided for general information. Talk to your advisor to confirm the details for your specific situation before taking action.

The IRS sends a CP32A Notice when your refund check expires without being cashed. It might have gotten lost in the mail, or you may have moved and forgotten to forward your mail.

You can view an example of this notice on the IRS website.

Does a CP32A Notice mean I owe taxes?

IRS Notice CP32A does not mean that you owe more or less taxes. This is not an audit of your tax return. You simply didn’t cash the refund check the IRS sent.

Of course, if you weren’t expecting a refund, you should go to irs.gov and review your account. In addition, if you aren’t sure if a notice is real, call the number on the IRS website not on the notice.

Did I lose my refund?

You did not lose your right to receive your tax refund. The IRS just needs information to send you a replacement refund check. You may lose your refund if you don’t respond to the notice.

Why do I need to call the IRS?

You need to call the IRS to verify your identity and your current address. They’ll also remind you not to cash the original check if you find it.

The IRS has been even worse than normal about answering their phones since the pandemic began. They have a backlog of returns, letters, and notices from when they were closed. They are also still having staffing issues.

If calling doesn’t work, you can try scheduling an appointment with your local IRS office. You can also try mailing a letter to the return address at the top of your Notice CP32A. However, sending a letter is not their stated procedure. They might accept that information, or they might say it’s not allowed or doesn’t verify your identity.

If the IRS says your check went to the wrong address, don’t forget to update your address with the US Postal Service so you don’t miss any other important mail.

What if I requested direct deposit?

It’s possible that you didn’t fill out the form correctly or the IRS couldn’t verify your bank account.

If you never received your direct deposit and were expecting a refund, the IRS may have decided to send a refund check instead. At this point, you’ll need to call the IRS for a replacement check to get your refund.


If you got a Notice CP32A, you either never cashed your refund check or it may have gotten lost in the mail. Contact the IRS to get a replacement check.

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