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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
My wife knows a couple that got about $11,000 back last year, and $12,000 back this year and doesn't understand how, legally. Here are the only details shes knows:

1. The wife doesn't work.
2. The wife does the tax returns herself online.
3. They have 3 children.
4. They don't own a house. They rent.
5. Yearly income is no more than $65,000, don't know how much is actually taxable.

Now knowing these details, my wife doesn't believe there is anyway they could legally get those returns with those details. Especially since they don't even own a house, which she says means they can't itemize. On the otherhand, she is a know-it-all. I am more open minded and figured maybe there are details that we don't know about that allow these returns, but I don't know much about this shyt. She says no way, especially since the brother of the husband owns a home, has a child, and only got back $6,000. She thinks if this goes on another year or two, they will get audited by the IRS and either go to jail or have to pay massive cash back.

So, is it possible these returns are legit? I would think the IRS would be suspicious after the first one.
 

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Player to be named later
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How much you get back is a very simple equation: Refund = Withholding + Credits - Taxes.

The way to bump up your refund is to

. Increase your withholding (meaning the government hangs onto a bunch of your money and collects interest on it until you get your refund)

. Increase your credits (like James said, kids are a pretty good at that... but trust me, they cost more than $2k/year!)

. Reduce your tax liability (if he's employed by a company there isn't too much you can do, but if he's self employed there's all kinds of things you can declare to increase deductions which lowers adjusted income and therefore tax liability)

It could be that in this case, the guy has way to much money withheld because they want that big refund to have it to spend on big ticket items. Yeah, he could simply put it aside and make interest on it, but some people are better at saving money if they can't even touch the money.
 

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It is sort of possible, with that many kids and a single family income it may lower the tax bracket so they can get a majority of the return back.
 

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KDM to JDM.
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I'm single living at home with no kids and I got a return of $995 this year (federal and state combined). Go me. All of that money went into repairing my new car, ahahaha.
 

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Not a n00b
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If claim 0 dependents your refund will be larger. because the take more taxes per paycheck. I claim 2 because I have a wage attachment for a $12,000 fine I'm paying on so that I actually get a check. The wife claims 0 and has them withhold an extra amount. We got back just over 7 grand this year.


I don't care what anyone gets back. I just care that I don't have to pay in.
 

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Calf...Ankles...Cankles!!
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i plan on getting back about 9500 next year with no kids, but then again, about 80% of that is going to be coming from the .gov for me buying a house :)
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Don't you get like $2000 a kid? That's half of it right there.

Also, if they have the job take out a lot during the year, then they get some back, right?

Or of course, they are lying about it.
My wife said it's $1,000 per kid and only up to two kids. So that's only $2000, according to her!
 

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You only get what you're owed. You either pay in too much throughout the year, and get it all back in the end - or pay in the correct amount, and get a smaller return.

In theory, it would be best to have to PAY come tax time - you can have your money all year in your account earning interest, then give it to the GOV on April 15, rather than throughout the year. Of course only like 1% of our population (if that) could be disceplined enough with spending to actually not spend it all throughout the year.
 

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Calf...Ankles...Cankles!!
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yep. i would rather get a single check for $1500-2000 at once than to get ~$150/mo that ill spend on misc stuff. i dont NEED to have that extra $, and i would never just hang onto it. this way, i can just get one large thing at the start of the year
 

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Small fry, and two McDoubles. You might need to throw in some change to cover tax though.
 

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Is the income salaried or self-employed? It's possible to get a huge refund if self employed, (in addition to child credit, dependent care credit, earned income tax credit, etc) since one can risk being very aggressive and itemize a LOT of expenses. The probability of the IRS auditing is much lower for people who make less than $100K a year and rent.

For example, I itemize $14K in car expenses for my Elantra each year (2000 miles a month *58 cents a mile). Perfectly legal deduction, as long as I maintain records of miles travelled between my office and client site.
 

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I'm single living at home with no kids and I got a return of $995 this year (federal and state combined). Go me. All of that money went into repairing my new car, ahahaha.
i got about $730 federal. i might get an IOU from state. **** california....
if i actually get $$ from state i should get about another $150. pretty good. the XD needs new struts soon, so i might go with a dreaded steelie drop with new struts and springs...
 

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I have 2 kids wife does not work, get back over $10,000 tax return every year. claim 0 dependents for my weekly deduction, I am a home owner. I pay $300 to have my taxes done.
 
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