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Tax Return was significantly less than predicted

I just received a payment from the IRS. They direct deposit was 1200 and I was project a bit over 4000. I got married last year and files jointly. Was wonder how to solve this because it is a lot less than what i got last year? Or if I messed up something while I filed. 

2 Replies
Level 15

Tax Return was significantly less than predicted


TurboTax does not get any information from the IRS after you file your tax return, so no one at TT knows why your refund was less.


 Sometimes we can make an educated guess as to the reason for your reduced refund if you mention specific amounts--for example if your refund was short by $1400 per person---it is likely to be a mix up regarding the 3rd EIP payment.    If you received the 3rd stimulus check of $1400 per person in 2021 then you got letter 6475 from the IRS about it.   You needed to enter the amount you received.   If you already received that money then line 30 on your Form 1040 should have been blank.





  If it is short by $1800 or  $1500 or  a multiple of that amount  ---   maybe a mixup regarding the advance child tax credit payments. If you received monthly child tax credit payments of $250 or $300 per month between July and December of 2021, then you got letter 6419 from the IRS, and you were required to enter the amount of the advance payments.   Only the remaining amount of the CTC should have been on line 28 of your Form 1040.


The IRS knows how much they sent to you for the 3rd stimulus check and they know how much they sent for advance child tax credit payments.   If you answered something incorrectly on your tax return then the IRS made a correction that resulted in a reduced refund for you. 




 Or---the fees you were supposed to pay for using TurboTax + the "refund processing fee" charged by the third party bank….

Did you choose to have TT fees deducted from your Federal refund?  (Remember that if you did that, you also agreed to an extra refund processing fee of $39.99 or $44.99 in CA)

How can I see my TurboTax  fees?


What is Refund Processing Service?



The IRS will send you a letter that explains why your refund was reduced.   Meanwhile it might help you to check your online IRS account.


If you need to trace a payment that the IRS says has been issued to you, mail or fax a completed IRS Form 3911, Taxpayer Statement Regarding Refund.




Updated IRS FAQ about recovery rebate credit


**Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to offer the most correct information possible. The poster disclaims any legal responsibility for the accuracy of the information that is contained in this post.**
Level 15

Tax Return was significantly less than predicted

@Anonymous - let me see if I can help


Since you state the refund was reduced by $2800, it's related to the Recovery Credit.


There was a question in the Federal Review section asking how much you both received for the 3rd stimulus....


since you were eligible for $2800 LESS what you already received, I suspect you answered $-0- to this question, instead of $2800.


That errant answer caused Line 30 to be $2800, instead of $-0-.  THe IRS knows what they sent you, so they reduced the Line 30 to zero, which in turn reduces the refund by the same $2800.


did you and spouse received the $2800 (each received $1400?) last March - May, 2021? (Check your bank statements - do not go on memory).   if yes, that is what happened. 

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