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Why did they include it all? The way the form works, it makes me feel like I am paying back the $600 I received this summer

Not everyone who should have recevied a rebate did. So there needs to be a mechanism to get the rebate to them. The mechanism happens to be line 47 (or thereabouts if I've got the wrong line number) of form 1040.

What you were looking at before entering your rebate amount was a tax return that was wrong. It is just like adding $10,000 to your mortgage interest in error. The bottom line shows a nice fat refund, but that doesn't make it a correct return. When you correct the $10,000 error in your mortgage interest, are you paying more taxes? When you correct the amount of the rebate you received are you paying more taxes?

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