State to Review Filing Status for 83,000 Taxpayers

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Public Affairs Office publicaffairsoffice@ftb.ca.gov

For Immediate Release

10.22.2015

Sacramento — The Franchise Tax Board (FTB) today announced that it is mailing more than 83,000 letters to taxpayers asking them to justify their Head of Household (HOH) filing status for their 2014 tax year.

The HOH filing status is important to many taxpayers because it increases the standard deduction and can dramatically lower their overall tax rate.

Used by more than 15 percent of Californians, the HOH filing status is for unmarried taxpayers who care for a child or other relative for more than half of a year and cover more than half of the household’s annual costs. Strict rules determine whether the relationship to the supported individual qualifies. For more on these rules, FTB provides an online guide and eligibility test.

The letters going out to taxpayers this month are part of a filing-status review FTB performs each year. Taxpayers who do not qualify as heads of household may be required to pay more. Those who do not respond will also have their tax liabilities recalculated, and may be charged a penalty.

A sample letter can be found here.

Taxpayers can respond by filling out the questionnaire and mailing it using the enclosed pre-addressed envelope. They can also respond online by visiting ftb.ca.gov and clicking HOH Audit Letter Web Response.

Other online resources for taxpayers include

  1. Answers to frequently asked questions.
  2. Publication 1540, “CA Head of Household Filing Status,” in English and Spanish.

FTB administers two of California's major tax programs: Personal Income Tax and the Corporation Tax. FTB also administers other non tax programs and delinquent debt collection functions, including delinquent vehicle registration debt collections on behalf of the Department of Motor Vehicles, and court–ordered debt. Annually, FTB’s tax programs collect more than 65 percent of the state’s general fund. For more information on other taxes and fees in California, visit taxes.ca.gov.

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