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Refund question

Why am I getting so little this year compared to last year's taxes doing Intuit 




4 Replies
Expert Alumni

Refund question

Many factors could cause a smaller refund or an unexpected tax owed. Below are some common culprits:

  • Although tax law changes lowered the rates for multiple tax brackets, your refund may not be as big as you expected because less income tax was taken out of your paychecks throughout the year. If you didn't update your W-4 for 2019 for any life and/or income changes (many people didn't), it’s highly possible that this is why your refund isn’t as large as you expected.
  • Your income may have increased to where you were in a higher tax bracket. Even if you had more tax withheld, it may not have been enough to account for the extra income. 
  • Another change may be due to ineligibility for certain credits in 2019. You may have been eligible for certain credits in prior years, but life changes in 2019 made you ineligible for these same credits. 
  • Additionally, you may have mistyped a dollar amount somewhere or accidentally missed an important question during the interview process. A typo or an incorrectly answered question can have an obvious effect on your bottom line. You may want to review all of your entries.

To check for all of these potential factors and more, may I recommend reviewing your prior year return, line-by-line, and comparing it to this year's forms? This will help you determine the changes between 2018 and 2019. 


Here's how to look at your current year return forms:

  • In the left-hand menu bar, click on Tax Tools, then click Tools.
  • Under Other helpful links, click View Tax Summary.
  • Your Tax Summary will be displayed. In the left-hand menu bar, you will see a new option: Preview My 1040. Click it, and this will allow you to see the forms. It is important to check your 1040 before you check your state return, as much of your entries on the 1040 will impact the state return.
  • If you want to view your state entries, Click on Tax Home in the left-hand menu bar. In the center of your screen, scroll down until you see State Taxes. Click on it to review your state entries.
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New Member

Refund question

How come I owe the state so much and my federal return is 300 lower then last year?  Haven’t been getting paychecks for 7 months being a server at a restaurant because they said we were paying more taxes on our checks so we should get a bigger return .. 

Expert Alumni

Refund question

Here are some things that could have led to a smaller refund or you owing a tax bill.


Have you input all of your tax documents?  Many tax documents are not required to be issued until January 31.


In addition, here are some of the more common issues that will affect your refund from one year to the next.


  • Change of jobs affect tax withholding computations causing you to withhold at a lower rate than last year.
  • Income increase or decrease affects a tax credit or deduction.
  • Income increase might compute your tax from a higher tax bracket.
  • A change in number of dependents.
  • The age or income of a dependent affects a tax credit or deduction.
  • Losing or not qualifying for a tax credit.
  • Self-employment income generates a self-employment tax as well as income taxes. 

You may also want to review this.


Is everything been entered correctly?  You can view the tax return to see what has been entered. 

  • Down the left side of the screen, click on Tax Tools.
  • Click on Tools.
  • Under Other helpful links, click on View Tax Summary.
  • Down the left side of the screen, click on Preview My 1040 to see the actual tax return that you prepared.
  • Down the left side of the screen, click Back to return. 


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Returning Member

Refund question

Answer has nothing to do with question. I have errors, cannot print or file because two forms (1040/1040SR) and Int & Tax worksheet supposedly has errors, but I can't see them. As no 1-800 support provide will file with H&R block.

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