Special Report

States With the Largest Average Tax Refund

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By the time tax day arrives on April 15, hundreds of millions of returns will have come into the Internal Revenue Service. In 2017, according to the IRS, over 245 million tax returns were filed by individuals, couples, businesses, trust funds, and more.

Altogether, the government collected more than $3.4 trillion from filed returns. Not all of that money, however, remained in government coffers — nearly $437 billion was refunded.

The average refund amounted to $3,582, but refunds were not evenly distributed. In three states, residents received an average refund of over $4,000. In three other states, the average refund was less than $2,500.

24/7 Wall St. reviewed the 2017 Internal Revenue Service Data Book to determine the states with the largest average tax refund.

These refunds can vary for many reasons. In some state, residents get lower refunds because these states have no income taxes. States that levy relatively high taxes have some of the highest refunds. The four of the five states that levy the most in taxes per capita all rank among the 5 states with the highest refunds in the country.

To determine the average tax refund in every state, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed the 2017 IRS Data Book for the total number of refunds issued in each state, then used the total amount refunded in each state to calculate the average tax refund. The state figure, which includes total filings receiving refunds, includes not just individual income tax returns but all filing documents, including corporate taxes, estate taxes, and more. The refund rate for individual income taxes is much higher in these states.

Click here to see the states with the largest average tax refund.
Click here to see our methodology.

50. Montana
> Average federal tax refund: $2,421
> Median household income: $53,386 (14th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $5,788 (6th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 39.8% (the lowest)

See all stories featuring: Montana

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49. Vermont
> Average federal tax refund: $2,443
> Median household income: $57,513 (24th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $7,092 (12th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 45.4% (7th lowest)

See all stories featuring: Vermont

48. Maine
> Average federal tax refund: $2,497
> Median household income: $56,277 (20th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $6,051 (8th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 46.8% (10th lowest)

See all stories featuring: Maine

47. Idaho
> Average federal tax refund: $2,512
> Median household income: $52,225 (11th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $6,049 (7th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 45.6% (8th lowest)

See all stories featuring: Idaho

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46. Wisconsin
> Average federal tax refund: $2,621
> Median household income: $59,305 (22nd highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $9,160 (22nd most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 50.8% (20th highest)

See all stories featuring: Wisconsin

45. West Virginia
> Average federal tax refund: $2,675
> Median household income: $43,469 (the lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $3,844 (the least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 58.7% (the highest)

See all stories featuring: West Virginia

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44. Hawaii
> Average federal tax refund: $2,682
> Median household income: $77,765 (3rd highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $6,595 (10th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 48.4% (18th lowest)

See all stories featuring: Hawaii

43. Oregon
> Average federal tax refund: $2,692
> Median household income: $60,212 (20th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $7,808 (17th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 44.6% (6th lowest)

See all stories featuring: Oregon

42. New Mexico
> Average federal tax refund: $2,702
> Median household income: $46,744 (5th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $4,300 (3rd least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 52.5% (10th highest)

See all stories featuring: New Mexico

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41. North Carolina
> Average federal tax refund: $2,726
> Median household income: $52,752 (13th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $8,065 (20th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 51.9% (17th highest)

See all stories featuring: North Carolina

40. Michigan
> Average federal tax refund: $2,737
> Median household income: $54,909 (18th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $8,299 (21st least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 52.4% (11th highest)

See all stories featuring: Michigan

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39. Kentucky
> Average federal tax refund: $2,742
> Median household income: $48,375 (7th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $7,886 (19th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 55.7% (5th highest)

See all stories featuring: Kentucky

38. Arizona
> Average federal tax refund: $2,750
> Median household income: $56,581 (23rd lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $6,261 (9th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 48.9% (24th lowest)

See all stories featuring: Arizona

37. Ohio
> Average federal tax refund: $2,776
> Median household income: $54,021 (16th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $12,187 (10th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 54.9% (6th highest)

See all stories featuring: Ohio

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36. New Hampshire
> Average federal tax refund: $2,801
> Median household income: $73,381 (6th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $9,040 (25th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 50.5% (22nd highest)

See all stories featuring: New Hampshire

35. South Carolina
> Average federal tax refund: $2,828
> Median household income: $50,570 (9th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $5,301 (4th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 52.0% (14th highest)

See all stories featuring: South Carolina

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34. Indiana
> Average federal tax refund: $2,832
> Median household income: $54,181 (17th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $8,841 (24th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 56.1% (4th highest)

See all stories featuring: Indiana

33. Tennessee
> Average federal tax refund: $2,860
> Median household income: $51,340 (10th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $10,284 (18th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 57.0% (2nd highest)

See all stories featuring: Tennessee

32. Arkansas
> Average federal tax refund: $2,912
> Median household income: $45,869 (3rd lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $10,804 (16th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 51.8% (18th highest)

See all stories featuring: Arkansas

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31. Nebraska
> Average federal tax refund: $2,919
> Median household income: $59,970 (21st highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $13,255 (8th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 47.9% (16th lowest)

See all stories featuring: Nebraska

30. Alabama
> Average federal tax refund: $2,933
> Median household income: $48,123 (6th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $5,453 (5th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 54.4% (7th highest)

See all stories featuring: Alabama

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29. Colorado
> Average federal tax refund: $2,964
> Median household income: $69,117 (11th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $10,120 (19th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 44.1% (5th lowest)

See all stories featuring: Colorado

28. Alaska
> Average federal tax refund: $2,966
> Median household income: $73,181 (7th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $7,299 (15th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 49.6% (25th highest)

See all stories featuring: Alaska

27. South Dakota
> Average federal tax refund: $2,977
> Median household income: $56,521 (22nd lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $9,053 (24th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 43.7% (4th lowest)

See all stories featuring: South Dakota

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26. Kansas
> Average federal tax refund: $2,981
> Median household income: $56,422 (21st lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $8,775 (22nd least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 48.5% (20th lowest)

See all stories featuring: Kansas

25. Utah
> Average federal tax refund: $3,007
> Median household income: $68,358 (13th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $7,249 (14th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 47.5% (12th lowest)

See all stories featuring: Utah

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24. Nevada
> Average federal tax refund: $3,015
> Median household income: $58,003 (25th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $7,195 (13th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 52.1% (12th highest)

See all stories featuring: Nevada

23. Mississippi
> Average federal tax refund: $3,017
> Median household income: $43,529 (2nd lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $3,934 (2nd least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 56.4% (3rd highest)

See all stories featuring: Mississippi

22. Maryland
> Average federal tax refund: $3,039
> Median household income: $80,776 (the highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $11,772 (11th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 50.3% (23rd highest)

See all stories featuring: Maryland

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21. Pennsylvania
> Average federal tax refund: $3,068
> Median household income: $59,195 (24th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $10,917 (15th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 52.8% (9th highest)

See all stories featuring: Pennsylvania

20. Rhode Island
> Average federal tax refund: $3,081
> Median household income: $63,870 (15th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $14,078 (6th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 52.0% (15th highest)

See all stories featuring: Rhode Island

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19. Florida
> Average federal tax refund: $3,096
> Median household income: $52,594 (12th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $9,191 (21st most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 46.8% (11th lowest)

See all stories featuring: Florida

18. Missouri
> Average federal tax refund: $3,105
> Median household income: $53,578 (15th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $11,764 (12th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 49.7% (24th highest)

See all stories featuring: Missouri

17. Virginia
> Average federal tax refund: $3,124
> Median household income: $71,535 (9th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $10,293 (17th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 51.1% (19th highest)

See all stories featuring: Virginia

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16. Georgia
> Average federal tax refund: $3,153
> Median household income: $56,183 (19th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $9,040 (25th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 52.1% (13th highest)

See all stories featuring: Georgia

15. North Dakota
> Average federal tax refund: $3,175
> Median household income: $61,843 (18th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $8,790 (23rd least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 42.9% (3rd lowest)

See all stories featuring: North Dakota

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14. Wyoming
> Average federal tax refund: $3,191
> Median household income: $60,434 (19th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $7,584 (16th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 42.7% (2nd lowest)

See all stories featuring: Wyoming

13. Massachusetts
> Average federal tax refund: $3,202
> Median household income: $77,385 (4th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $16,472 (3rd most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 48.6% (21st lowest)

See all stories featuring: Massachusetts

12. Iowa
> Average federal tax refund: $3,231
> Median household income: $58,570 (25th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $7,834 (18th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 48.3% (17th lowest)

See all stories featuring: Iowa

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11. Washington
> Average federal tax refund: $3,234
> Median household income: $70,979 (10th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $11,596 (13th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 48.7% (22nd lowest)

See all stories featuring: Washington

10. California
> Average federal tax refund: $3,239
> Median household income: $71,805 (8th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $11,141 (14th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 46.5% (9th lowest)

See all stories featuring: California

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9. Louisiana
> Average federal tax refund: $3,261
> Median household income: $46,145 (4th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $9,121 (23rd most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 51.9% (16th highest)

See all stories featuring: Louisiana

8. New York
> Average federal tax refund: $3,458
> Median household income: $64,894 (14th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $13,519 (7th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 48.9% (23rd lowest)

See all stories featuring: New York

7. Illinois
> Average federal tax refund: $3,525
> Median household income: $62,992 (16th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $12,680 (9th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 50.6% (21st highest)

See all stories featuring: Illinois

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6. Oklahoma
> Average federal tax refund: $3,714
> Median household income: $50,051 (8th lowest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $6,897 (11th least)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 49.3% (25th lowest)

See all stories featuring: Oklahoma

5. Minnesota
> Average federal tax refund: $3,846
> Median household income: $68,388 (12th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $18,726 (the most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 47.9% (15th lowest)

See all stories featuring: Minnesota

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4. Texas
> Average federal tax refund: $3,949
> Median household income: $59,206 (23rd highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $9,573 (20th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 53.5% (8th highest)

See all stories featuring: Texas

3. Connecticut
> Average federal tax refund: $4,001
> Median household income: $74,168 (5th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $16,036 (4th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 48.5% (19th lowest)

See all stories featuring: Connecticut

2. New Jersey
> Average federal tax refund: $4,153
> Median household income: $80,088 (2nd highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $15,972 (5th most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 47.8% (14th lowest)

See all stories featuring: New Jersey

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1. Delaware
> Average federal tax refund: $4,445
> Median household income: $62,852 (17th highest)
> Federal tax collections per capita: $17,757 (2nd most)
> Pct. filings receiving refunds: 47.6% (13th lowest)

See all stories featuring: Delaware

To determine the average tax refund in every state, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed the 2017 IRS Data Book for the total number of refunds issued in each state, then used the total amount refunded in each state to calculate the average tax refund. The state figure, which includes total filings receiving refunds, includes not just individual income tax returns but all filing documents, including corporate taxes, estate taxes, and more. The refund rate for individual income taxes is much higher in these states.

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