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I received a pre-assessment notice from the California Franchise

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I received a "pre-assessment" notice...
I received a "pre-assessment" notice from the California Franchise office.
They claim that I didn't pay my state taxes for the 2008 year, and they have assessed that I owe $289, as well as roughly $100 in interest/late fees.
I know that I filed my federal for that year, and I'm fairly certain I filed my state as well, but I don't have a copy of the return anywhere to send to them.
What is the procedure as far as next steps? Are they going to keep coming after me for $289?
I don't see why I should have to pay anything, as I'm fairly certain it's a mistake on their end, however, I'd rather not go to jail over it , or have my wages garnished.
Thanks for any advice you may have.
Submitted: 7 years ago.Category: Tax
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10/4/2010
Tax Professional: William Ellis, CPA, CPA replied 7 years ago
William Ellis, CPA
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 296
Experience: Over 15 years of experience in public accounting
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William Ellis, CPA :

If you filed your returns electronically, you probably did file your state return. Obviously, the Franchise Board has a copy or transcript of your federal return but cannot locate a state return that matches it. If you had withholdings from your wages, you probably just need to file the return. I'd send them a copy of the state return again. They may have taken a page from the IRS and figured your tax at the highest rate while disregarding any deductions you'll claim. If you don't file, you will eventually be subject to garnishments or liens. If you owe, the longer you wait the greater your penalties and interest will be. Hope this helps, Bill

William Ellis, CPA
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 296
Experience: Over 15 years of experience in public accounting
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