State Sales And Use tax return

Had a strange Situation with my sales tax return today.

I get two letters in the mail from the state DOR.

First letter (dated March 11):

You failed to pay your state tax, please enclose $XXXX to settle up.

Second Letter (dated March 12):

A check for the amount I apparently overpayed in sales tax.

Seems strange to me that the DOR completely flip flopped on my sales tax status over the course of 24 hours.

Should I contact them to see what’s going on?

This is only my second year filing a sales tax return, is this a normal occurance?

you are not my tax attorney, blah blah
Just looking for feedback to see if I should spend all day tomorrow on hold.

  1. Which state?

  2. What sort of business are you in, W2 income or do you (also) run a business?

  3. I would contact them, using the number found through Google and not printed on the letter. Such a letter may be legit, but I would get the official word.

  4. It’s not clear: did you try to voluntarily pay a Use tax?

  5. Without seeing the letters, and if #4 is true, it sounds like letter 1 reflects that they believe you probably made more online purchases than you claimed, and letter 2 means for the amount you claimed, a calculation or other error was made (by you or by them), and here’s a refund.

This. It’s possible that letter #1 could be from a scammer, but don’t count on it. Check it out in the manner suggested.

Here’s a few possibilities that come to my mind:
[A] They have you listed under two different account numbers. You overpaid on one account and the other shows no payment received at all.
** The refund is from 2015 Q3 and the demand for payment is for 2015 Q4.
[C] Your check got processed on March 11th, after they had already printed the first letter, and the check was for too much money.

Hell yes.

Definitely contact them. It could be as simple as two departments generating two letters at different times and maybe there’s no problem, but it could also be much more complicated.

I disagree. I think the OP should just shred the letters and pretend he never saw them. Nothing bad could possibly result from doing so. And even if it does, tell them **Dewey Finn **said that was the right thing to do.

Tell Messrs. Cheatem & Howe I said hello.

:confused::dubious: Is this a trick question?

thelurkinghorror nailed it in one: get their phone number from the internet (not from the docs you received in the mail) and give them a call.

It wouldn’t surprise me if these letters were generated by two different employees. My guess would be that the payment was posted a bit late (perhaps due to some backup in the office), just a bit after their program triggered the first letter.

If you have evidence showing you filed/paid for the given period, the first letter is moot.

Anyone interested in what happened?

So is the DOR :slight_smile:

My check cleared on Jan. 22.

The first letter had no business being made, (so possibly a scammer?)

The refund check is the real deal though

So how long did you spend on hold and how nice and/or knowledgeable was/wasn’t the person you talked to? Were you surprised?

I was pleasantly surprised! Probably spent 10 minutes total on hold. The person was nice, and knowledgable enough to give me a yes or no answer within one minute.

Overall I would give the State tax collectors two thumbs up. (that was a hard sentence to type!)

What kind of scam would this be? For people who will mail a check like anywhere?

Because it’s hard to type without using your thumbs?

Same as the telephone ones – scare someone with diminished faculties.

In response to an official-looking letter, yes. You’d be surprised what a significant fraction of the population that is. I know a law firm that was caught out by a related scam.

doesn’t even have to be official looking.
People seem more than willing to pay others for no good reason.
My wife and I get spam almost every day enclosing “invoices” as if we were businesses. The virus detectors flag all the attachments so far.

My father assured me that back in the day a popular idea was to put an ad in the paper saying in toto: “LAST CHANCE! send $5 to …” It got so bad that the US Postal Service defined the idea as a scam and arrested anyone picking up the payments.

I am sure that if one did the same thing on Facebook today you would be inundated with envelopes with $5 bills.