What’s new for Head of Household? January 2019 Tax News

Head of Household

Beginning with returns filed for tax year 2019, we will be able to determine if a taxpayer qualifies for Head of Household (HOH) when the return is processed. We do this by using the information provided on FTB Form 3532, which is required to be attached when taxpayers file as the HOH. If a taxpayer does not qualify for HOH or did not provide FTB Form 3532, we will issue a Notice of Tax Return Change (NTRC) to deny the HOH filing status. This is a change from prior years, when we would have issued a Notice of Proposed Assessment (NPA).


An HOH NPA is a "proposed" change in tax due with the return. If a taxpayer disagrees with an HOH NPA, they may file a protest. When a Protest is filed, it is worked by a protest hearing technician, which may delay the resolution of the issue and often requires additional documentation from the taxpayer.

Alternatively, a NTRC is a change to the tax due with the return. Refund amounts are reduced, possibly resulting in a bill, or if there is a balance due, that amount may increase. If a taxpayer believes it was issued in error, they may contact the Filing Contact Center via phone, chat, or correspondence, without having to file a protest. The taxpayer also has the option to pay the balance in full and submit a claim for refund. If the claim for refund denied, the taxpayer can appeal with the OTA.

Why the change?

We are always looking for ways to improve our customer experience and this change was made with that goal in mind. With an NPA, a taxpayer may have already received a refund when we contact them several months later asking for some or all of their refund back. This can be frustrating and difficult to understand why we issued the refund in the first place.

By issuing an NTRC we can dramatically shorten the process. If someone does not qualify, they will know immediately why they do not qualify and what they need to do to resolve it. An NTRC can be resolved by reaching out to our contact center and often can be resolved in one contact.

How do I resolve an NTRC?

If you disagree with an NTRC issued, you may contact us by:

  • Phone: Filing Contact Center
  • Chat: through MyFTB
  • Correspondence: by mail or online

Reminder: In order to ensure we make an accurate determination please make sure a completed FTB Form 3532 is attached when submitting your clients’ 2019 tax returns claiming HOH filing status.