I moved to Arizona late 2018 and filed a part-year return there. Why do I owe the state taxes if I am disabled and only get disability and alimony as income?

by James G. McGrory, CPA, and Stephanie K. Otake, CPA | Jun 27, 2019

I moved to Arizona in November 2018, so I filed part-year taxes online and was supposed to get back $25. But they took it, saying I owed that much. I am disabled and get disability and alimony as my only income. How could I owe them anything? Am I not able to get my tax refund?

You are correct in filing a part-year resident income tax return in Arizona for the time you lived there during tax year 2018. Arizona taxes income earned by individuals during their period of residency, regardless of source, as long as the amounts are reportable in Arizona. Arizona taxes both disability benefits and alimony income, so it is likely that you would owe income tax, unless you have any offsetting credits or payments on account. 

If you believe you incorrectly filed your Arizona part-year resident tax return, you can amend it to reflect the proper refund you are owed or tax liability due. 

Without more information regarding your tax situation or the exact amounts that were filed with your Arizona part-year return, it is difficult to determine whether you are actually owed a refund or not. 

Filing part-year tax returns in the year you move to a different state can be complicated. A CPA can help you navigate through those complexities and obtain the most optimal tax result for you.

For more resources, check out PICPA’s Money & Life Tips, Ask a CPA, or CPA Locator.

Answered by:  James G. McGrory, CPA, and Stephanie K. Otake, CPA, are with Drucker & Scaccetti in Philadelphia.

The responses are based on the limited information provided by the questioner and apply the laws and regulations at the time of posting. Other options could arise as rules and regulations may change over time, including but not limited to the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. They are intended to provide general information, not specific accounting or tax advice; they are not intended or written to be used and cannot be used for the purpose of avoiding or evading taxes or penalties under the IRS code or regulations. Views expressed do not imply an opinion of the PICPA, its officers, directors, employees, or members.
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