Get new articles by email:

Oblivious Investor offers a free newsletter providing tips on low-maintenance investing, tax planning, and retirement planning.

Join over 19,000 email subscribers:

Articles are published every Monday. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Tax Return vs. Tax Refund vs. Tax Rebate

Now that tax season is in full swing, many personal finance bloggers are delving into the field of taxation to offer tips on how to save money. And as long as they get their facts straight, that’s great. I’m all for people saving money on taxes.

But one thing that absolutely drives me up a wall is when people (at least, people who are putting themselves forth as knowledgeable about taxation) confuse the terms “return” and “refund.”

It’s simple really:

Your tax return is the paperwork that you fill out and send in to the IRS.

Your refund is the check that you get back from the IRS.

And remember those checks that we received in early 2008 in an attempt to stimulate the economy? Those were rebates.

There. Now at least we’ll all sound like we know what we’re talking about. 🙂

For More Information, See My Related Book:


Taxes Made Simple: Income Taxes Explained in 100 Pages or Less

Topics Covered in the Book:
  • The difference between deductions and credits,
  • Itemized deductions vs. the standard deduction,
  • Several money-saving deductions and credits and how to make sure you qualify for them,
  • Click here to see the full list.

A testimonial from a reader on Amazon:

"Very easy to read and is a perfect introduction for learning how to do your own taxes. Mike Piper does an excellent job of demystifying complex tax sections and he presents them in an enjoyable and easy to understand way. Highly recommended!"
Disclaimer: By using this site, you explicitly agree to its Terms of Use and agree not to hold Simple Subjects, LLC or any of its members liable in any way for damages arising from decisions you make based on the information made available on this site. The information on this site is for informational and entertainment purposes only and does not constitute financial advice.

Copyright 2022 Simple Subjects, LLC - All rights reserved. To be clear: This means that, aside from small quotations, the material on this site may not be republished elsewhere without my express permission. Terms of Use and Privacy Policy

My Social Security calculator: Open Social Security