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State tax refund is short
Old 03-19-2016, 11:03 PM   #1
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State tax refund is short

I'm curious as to what others think about this. Recently CPA filed our taxes. We are retired. We had applied our 2014 state refund to 2015 ($2300) and also paid an estimated state tax payment of $3000 towards 2015 taxes. It turns out that we ended up moving from that state early in the year and owed no tax due to no income.
Well, we just got our state refund deposited in bank account and it was only for the 2014 refund amount that we applied to 2015. ($2300) They did not refund the estimated payment of $3000.

My CPA says I have to wait for them to send a letter explaining why they did not include the estimated payment refund amount, and then she will submit our proof of payment. I have found a copy of the cleared check for proof.

Hopefully, it won't be too hard to straighten out but just curious as to others thoughts? This is the first time in almost 45 years of filing taxes that they have ever changed a return.

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Old 03-20-2016, 08:43 AM   #2
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Something similar happened to me late last year. Franchise Tax Board (CA) adjusted my return, reason not stated but the amount matched one of my estimated tax payments. I had my bank send check images for all of these payments, and I forwarded these off with a letter and a copy of the original FTB notice.

No response after three months so I called FTB. They "found the money", apparently one of my estimated tax payments was assigned to a "second profile" for me they created without a social security number. I asked for a confirmation letter, but they said they don't send these in this situation, just ignore the notice. They also reassured me that this second profile was not a security breach, just a clerical error (which I imagine happened to others as well?).

A couple of months ago I got their 1099G statement and the refund shown was the wrong amount on their original notice, so back on the phone. Did they change their minds? Apparently not, just their system was slow getting my update. This time they were willing to send me both a corrected 1099G and an official notice describing the correction. Case closed (hopefully).

This incident was the first for me in 30+ yeaars.
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Old 03-20-2016, 09:00 AM   #3
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I do not think it is a good idea to wait for them to come to you. A better approach would be for you to contact them. I would call them to initiate the discussion. It sounds like your account was not properly credited with your $3,000 estimated payment. Once you provide proof that they received it they should be able to track it down and send you an additional refund.
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Old 03-20-2016, 10:34 AM   #4
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I had an electronic estimated payment stuck recently in MD. Entered in Dec to get the deduction but after two weeks nothing happened. I tried calling them but the person couldn't see any transaction in their system. I then sent a certified letter to the Comptroller with a copy to the ombudsman. It was polite but direct. The payment processed within one day of their receipt of my letter. I'm guessing they found a batch of ACH transactions that had gotten hung up.
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Old 03-20-2016, 12:37 PM   #5
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For many years, NY revenue always misplaced a check we used to pay our state income taxes when filing for an extension. Always.

We finally started sending a photocopy of the paid cancelled check with our tax return when we filed later in the summer.

I just assumed it was normal that state income tax offices were never on the ball.
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Old 03-20-2016, 01:37 PM   #6
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Just noticed our CA state refund came via ACH on Friday, 5 business days after we filed electronically. We made one estimated tax payment last April, and also had normal payroll withholding throughout the year and it looks like they kept that all straight and we got the right amount back.

I'm not used to getting a refund as we usually try to owe a bit, so it's a relief to have it work right. Hopefully the IRS refund goes smoothly too.
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Old 03-20-2016, 04:34 PM   #7
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My state (not CA) has a web site where you can look up the status of estimated payments that you have sent. For me it was an ACH checking account debit that I scheduled for late Dec 2015.

After 60 days or so I can go to the web site and put in my personal info, tax year, 'estimated payment' type and display what they have on file for me. Fortunately this payment showed up on their site correctly.

Hopefully when I receive my state tax refund the estimated payment will be included into the refund.

IF CA has a similar system perhaps it may give you additional clues as to what is going on and how things change with time.

-gauss
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Old 03-20-2016, 05:57 PM   #8
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Years ago, before email and Internet, I had a problem with my NJ refund. I'd love to tell the full story but it would be way too long. Anyway, my first letter of inquiry was, frankly, borderline nasty.
I took that tone from the outset because they were so in the wrong, and I knew I had a bureaucratic gauntlet to run through. But that initial tone apparently worked, to an extent. My inquiry got moved to the front of the line. It only took 3 months for them to resolve .
I shudder to think what would have happened if I was polite. I'd probably still be waiting for that refund. I suggest you waste no time and initiate your inquiry; what tone to use is at your discretion.
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Old 03-20-2016, 10:07 PM   #9
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I will tell my CPA that I want to initiate contact without waiting for a letter from the state. I mean, really, there is a good possibility that I may never receive an explanation unless I contact them first. Thanks!

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Old 03-20-2016, 11:20 PM   #10
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My State is so dumb, they ask us to attach the Fed 1040 return to the state return, so they can get the numbers off it.
So if I give them a fake one, how would they know ? and if they know because they check with the feds, then why ask me to attach the paper work ?

Last year we filed and the state denied something, because there was no proof I paid the state tax with the form, yet don't you think the State should know how much I paid them ? , so I sent in the proof (which says right on it "don't send this with your State return" ).
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Old 03-21-2016, 08:32 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunset View Post
My State is so dumb.....
Yes, but your tax filing issue is very minor in relation to the rest of the mess in Illinois.... woefully underfunded pensions.... gridlock on a state budget... and the list goes on.
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