Filing taxes in Minnesota | Minnesota Public Radio News

Filing taxes in Minnesota

Tax experts were warning it was going to be a tough tax season, has that been your experience?

    What has your experience been like filing your taxes this year? Has it changed at all from previous years? How?

    “My wife and I are both professionals. We are not rich nor are we poor. Last year we received a $2,000 refund. This year we paid in $3,200. No changes to income. No other “gotcha” items. I've heard that some White House officials, most likely Sara Sanders and also Sen. Chuck Grassely, have told the public that the tax cut is not directly proportional to their refund. That we received more in our paycheck over the course of the year, which is true. What was neglected to be communicated is that there are withholding changes. The White House did as they promised, cut taxes but what was the reason for changing the withholding ceiling? End result? I just gave back any money I made over the year to the IRS. I wonder how the wealthy fared?” — Taher Omar, Brooklyn Center

    “I was worried it was going to be very confusing. The Federal form was easy, even though I have schedules and extra forms because of kids in college. I'm getting a smaller refund than last year, partly because one of the kids finished college, partly because of smaller withholding. The Minnesota forms were familiar and as convoluted as ever. I owe a bit more than last year, but less than the Federal refund.” — Katie Cross, Minneapolis
    “The Federal form was much easier, next year I may use a free service instead of paying for TurboTax, specially if Minnesota conforms to the federal tax system. It was a good thing I increased my federal withholding or I would have to pay in, instead of getting a small refund.” — Wayne Pulford, Proctor
    “I used Turbotax software, and it hasn't been any different. The main thing I noticed is that my refunds were smaller since the withholdings were reduced last year.” — Paul Rozendaal, Minneapolis
    Their advice: “Don't panic! And don't expect to pay off all your Christmas debt with your refund.”
    “I cannot afford to pay income taxes on my Social Security and retirement. Minnesota needs to cut spending not raise my taxes.” — Jon Leppala, Duluth
    “Not much. I pay in every year because I don't like giving the government interest free money. Besides, my investment incomes don't come in until February 22 and that is a factor in how much I owe.” — Lee von Lehe, St. Paul
    Their advice: “Make certain you look at how you deduct so you don't give the government too much money.”
    “I use a CPA and his tax fees are slightly higher this year because of the differences of Minnesota Department of Revenue and the IRS.” — Jon Murphy, Blaine
    “I'm old school. I always fill out the paper forms and send them in the mail. This year, my Federal return felt like a disaster. It took between two-three times as long to complete. While the Republicans held true to their pledge that you could submit your taxes on the form of a postcard, chances are that if you do it that way, you're probably doing it wrong and opening yourself up to tax penalties. By contrast, my Minnesota return was less complicated and straight-forward.” — Peter McNary, Minneapolis
    “We have a tax professional do our taxes. We live in St. Croix Falls, Wis., but both my husband and I work in Minn. Although we paid less to have our taxes done this year, we are receiving about half as much back as we normally do. This is even after we changed our withholding amounts after the new tax law was approved.” — St. Croix Falls, Wis.
    “I owed a lot more in federal taxes, and it wasn't because less money was withheld. I'm solidly middle class, a widowed, retired nurse, and I pay the quarterly estimated tax, so I know exactly how much I'm paying from year to year. Fortunately, I paid $3,000 more than I did last year in my quarterly estimated payments for the year, so I didn't have to pay more when I filed, but I did pay more in taxes this year.” — Joyce Denn, Woodbury
    “First problem is that because of the Trump shutdown, I had to send in an year-end payment but no one could answer a question. After, it re-opened I went to the IRS office, however, it would be so long to wait for an agent that I just took some of the forms that I would need. Getting home, I find out that I have to file more forms than last year ... and I still do not have all the forms yet. Postcard filing is a joke. So next week, I will have to go again. Thanks Trump!” — Mac Hall
    “I owe more than $4,000 to the IRS for 2018. I am single and own my home. In the past I was able to itemize my deductions. This year my income bumped me over the limit to be able to itemize. In the past years I would receive a modest refund below $1,000.” — Karen Levisen, Apple Valley
    “Same experience with H&R Block, but I got back half of what my refund was like last year with no changes on my end.” — Brian Reilly
    “I have to pay in so I won't do mine until April, and send in the checks on the last possible day. I will use TurboTax.” — David Anderson, St. Paul
    “Filing has changed from last year. I turned 65 and am on Medicare now, my spouse changed health insurance plans. Investment income got more complicated.” — Jerome Roehl, Walker
    Their advice: “Be sure to look at all the deductions and even if there is not enough to itemize on the federal return there may be enough to itemize on the state. Consult a professional tax preparer and ask a lot of questions.”
    “I use Tax Act, which pulls potential Minnesota deductions forward from the federal itemized deductions. Since I have kids and a mortgage, there are some significant tax savings on my Minnesota taxes if I itemize. I don't agree with a lot of what the federal tax change did last year, but it happened and the Minnesota legislature made it even harder for Minnesotans to file their taxes by being more and more out of step with federal law.” — Camille Holthaus, Minneapolis
    “We were nervous about taxes. My husband is self-employed and received a large client payment the last week of the year. This payment was more than we generally made in one year so we worried about how much tax date we would have. My husband made a tax appointment for the first week in February. We were excited to find out we would be receiving a small refund from both state and federal taxes. Much less than in previous years but we made significantly more. We are pleased with the outcome!” — Laura Knudsen, Alexandria
    “I'm doing my own taxes on paper again. About the same amount of data as last year on a different collection of forms for federal. Big reduction in taxes as I expected. Some learning curve time. For the state, not much difference for me beyond the reference to the different lines on the 1040.” — Tom Hauwiller, Oakdale
    “We noticed for the first time on our federal tax form, a required list of each of our financial institutions i.e. bank, savings and loan, credit union, etc. with the amount of interest paid from each. Thus, the potential with this country's $22 trillion debt, it is now possible for our savings to be drained to pay that debt, as has occurred with several foreign countries in the recent past. Contacting several members of congress asking if there is any protection to prevent this, none have responded in the least.” — Ken Benner
    “Exhausting as usual. 5.5 hours. Both state and fed. Itemized deductions TurboTax for 8 years.  I thought it was supposed to be simpler this year. There were many more questions and fewer deductions.” — Marianna Stotesbury, Minneapolis
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