Law 115 Nature of distribution of funds

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is an Act 115 review?

Act 115, Hawaii Session Law 2022 (Act 115), provides a one-time statutory refund to qualified local taxpayers who file a 2021 tax return in on or before December 31, 2022.

2. Who qualifies for an Act 115 refund?

A resident taxpayer who files an individual income tax return for the 2021 tax year who has been a resident of Hawaii for at least nine (9) months.

Refunds will not be available for:
1) Anyone who claims or qualifies as a dependent of another taxpayer for federal or Hawaii income tax purposes.

2) Anyone convicted of a felony and incarcerated, and any felony offender who was incarcerated during the full 2021 fiscal year.

3. What do I need to do to get a refund?

File your 2021 personal tax return by December 31, 2022. If you have already filed your 2021 personal tax return, you do not need to take any further action.

4. How much is my Act 115 refund?

The amount of your Act 115 refund is based on your application status, federal income, and the number of exemptions you can claim. For Act 115 loans, only one repayment per person is allowed. Act 115 refunds are $100 or $300 per person as follows:

Writing status Federal Adjusted Gross Income Refunds per release (person)
single Less than $100,000 $300
single $100,000 and up $100
Head of household Less than $100,000 $300
Head of household $100,000 and up $100
Married Filing Jointly Less than $200,000 $300
Married Filing Jointly $200,000 and up $100
Filing for separate marriages (joined spouses) Less than $200,000* $300
Filing for separate marriages (joined spouses) $200,000 and up* $100
Spouse / widow(er) Less than $200,000 $300
Spouse / widow(er) $200,000 and up $100

* These federal AGI thresholds for married couples filing separately are combined for married couples. These registrants can get the refund they would have if they filed together.

5. When will I receive my Act 115 review?

Act 115 refunds will be issued based on the order in which the 2021 tax return is filed.

The Department of Revenue will begin issuing Act 115 refunds in the first week of September 2022.

The Act 115 repayment dates are in the table below:

N-11/N-15 Installation date 1/1/22 – 8/31/22 9/1/22 – 12/31/22
Direct cashback September 2022 up to 10 weeks after installation
Return on certificate September – November 2022 up to 12 weeks after installation

The Tax Department continuously monitors and evaluates tax and financial information to prevent fraud. Refunds may be changed from direct deposit to paper verification if information cannot be verified or if information contradicts other returns filed. For security purposes, the authentication performed cannot be disclosed.

If you have not received a direct refund by the estimated time, the Tax Department asks you to be patient until the end of November. There may be late submissions, rejections, or changes to certificates for various reasons. Once the check deposit is received, the cashier’s refund will be issued at a rate of 90,000 per week.

The most effective way to ask questions is to send an email to the Tax Department at [email protected]. Taxpayers can also call (808) 587-4242, but email may be a more efficient process.

6. Will I receive my Act 115 refund via electronic direct deposit or paper check?

If you claimed a refund on your 2021 tax return and requested electronic direct deposit, your Act 115 refund will be deposited into the same bank account.

You will receive your Act 115 refund via paper check if you applied for a paper refund, did not pay additional tax, or paid additional tax.

7. Can I change how I receive my Act 115 refund?

No, the Department of Revenue cannot change the issuance of Act 115 refunds from electronic direct deposit to paper verification or vice versa.

8. I received my return on form 115 by mail check but it has moved since I filed the return, what should I do?

Please update your address through Hawaii Tax Online or submit Form ITPS-COA as soon as possible. The Tax Department cannot update addresses by unsecured phone calls or emails.

To update your HTO address:

  1. Enter HTO, select More… chart, registration tile, choose Manage email addresses
  2. Use it Mailing addresschoose Email address update
  3. Enter the required information and select accept

9. I am receiving my Act 115 refund by direct deposit but my bank account has been closed since I filed the refund, what should I do?

You do not need to take any additional action. You will receive your Act 115 refund through a paper check.

10. I originally filed my 2021 personal tax return and also filed my amended personal tax return for the year 2021, am I eligible for an Act 115 refund?

Yes, your Act 115 return will be based on your amended 2021 tax return.

11. The 2021 personal income tax return reported the additional tax due, am I entitled to an Act 115 refund?

Yes, regardless of whether you overpaid or claimed a refund on your 2021 tax return, you are eligible for an Act 115 refund.

12. I am 65 years old and I am allowed to claim two exemptions based on my age on my 2021 personal income tax return, am I entitled to two refunds under Act 115 me?

No, each person gets only one Act 115 refund.

13. I am disabled and am allowed to claim a $7,000 personal exemption amount on my 2021 income tax return, am I eligible for more than one 115 return.

No, each person gets only one Act 115 refund.

14. I live with my husband, we have two children, and my adjusted federal income (federal AGI) is $150,000, how much is my Act 115 refund?

The Act 155 rebate is $1,200 because you have four qualifying people and you get the $300 rebate for each person.

15. I am married but separated from my spouse, we have no dependents, my federal AGI is $150,000, and my spouse’s AGI is $75,000, how much is the Act 115 refund?

Separately married taxpayers must combine their spouses’ federal AGI to determine their Act 115 refund amount. Since your combined federal AGI exceeds $200,000, each spouse will receive a refund of Act 115 $100.

16. Will my Act 115 refund be taxed?

Act 115 refunds will be used to offset taxes owed to the IRS and any unpaid debts owed to outside agencies, such as child support payments. However, Act 115 refunds will not be used to offset taxes owed to the State of Hawaii.

17. Is my Act 115 return subject to income tax?

Restoration of Act 115 no included as income on a federal or state return. Unlike regular state tax refunds that must be included in income, Act 115 refunds are not received as a result of deductions required for taxes paid.

18. The bank account on my 2021 income tax return was created by my tax preparer. How do I receive my Act 115 refund?

Act 115 refunds will be deposited into the bank account specified in the taxpayer’s 2021 tax return. If the bank account was created by a tax preparer, please contact your tax preparer if you have questions about how to access the Act 115 refund that will be deposited into that bank account. If your bank account has been closed by the tax preparer, you will receive your Act 115 refund through a paper check.

19. How much will I receive if I filed my 2021 personal income tax as Married Filing Separately but my spouse has not yet filed a 2021 tax return? I have three children, my federal AGI is $75,000, but I don’t know my husband’s federal AGI.

Married filing separately must file a separate 2021 tax return to calculate their combined federal AGI to determine their Act 115 refund amount. Since your combined federal AGI is unknown, you will receive $400 ($100 per qualified person). If your spouse files a 2021 individual return by December 31, 2022 and their combined federal AGI is less than $200,000, you will receive an additional Act 115 refund of $800 (an additional $200 per qualified person).

20. I received an Act 115 refund for my mother, who passed away in 2021. What should I do with the refund? Do I need a refund?

Act 115 refunds are issued to qualified taxpayers who filed their tax returns in 2021, whether they are still alive or not. You do not need to repeat the refund. If the marriage certificate needs to be returned in the name of a surviving spouse, court-appointed or certified personal representative, or other person, a Declaration of the Person Requesting Return must be completed and filed. Debt of the deceased taxpayer (form N-110). the tax refund verification to the Tax Department. Refunds will be issued under the appropriate name.

Related:

Tax Notice 2022-03



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