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Head of Household audit letters begin arriving in July

Each year we review the returns of taxpayers who claim the Head of Household (HOH) filing status because the qualifications for the filing status are often misunderstood. This year we expect to mail approximately 150,000 HOH Audit Letters for the 2006 tax year between July and December 2007.

HOH audit staff review the completed questionnaires to determine if taxpayers qualify for the HOH filing status. If the Audit Letter questionnaire is incomplete, or provides conflicting information, we contact taxpayers to resolve the issue. When the HOH filing status is confirmed, we send an acceptance letter to qualified taxpayers. Acceptance letters only apply to the specific tax year examined and do not qualify the taxpayer for any other tax year.

Taxpayers who don't respond to the questionnaire, or whose responses indicate that they don't qualify as HOH, can expect a Notice of Proposed Assessment that disallows their HOH filing status. If you have clients who receive an audit letter, advise them to respond by the letter's due date to avoid a failure to furnish information penalty.

HOH and e-file

Taxpayers who e-file and claim the HOH filing status, have the option of electronically completing and including an HOH questionnaire (HOH Schedule FTB 4803E) with their e-filed return. We will not mail an HOH Audit Letter to taxpayers who submitted this information electronically. They may, however, still receive a follow-up audit letter if they provide incomplete or conflicting information.

New this year

Your clients with Internet access can answer the 2006 HOH Audit letter at www.ftb.ca.gov. They should:

  • Access the HOH Webpage.
  • Click on the HOH Audit Letter Web Response Application (taxpayers will need their FTB ID number, which is printed on the HOH Audit Letter, and their social security number).

Taxpayers who use this application do not need to mail or fax their response to us.

You and your clients can get more information about the HOH filing status, and can access the HOH Web Response Application by visiting our HOH Webpage.