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I retired from my educator position in AZ Sept. 2012. I received

I retired from my educator...
I retired from my educator position in AZ Sept. 2012. I received an attendance & loyalty award in July 2013 totaling just over $18,000. My employer took out taxes as if I was receiving this amount as a bi-weekly payroll, so even though I claimed single and 9 dependents, I had over $7,000 taken out in this one-time bonus.

What recourse do I have in strongly 'encouraging" my previous employer to correct their withholdings error?

Thanks, Laura
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Answered in 1 minute by:
7/10/2013
Megan C
Megan C, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 16,581
Experience: Licensed CPA, CFE, CMA, CGMA who teaches accounting courses at Master's Level
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MyVirtualCPA :

Thanks for asking your question! I'm sorry to hear about your tax issue and I'm going to try my best to help you understand or resolve it.

MyVirtualCPA :

Laura, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but there is little you can do to seek any remedy from your previous employer for their withholding of this award.

MyVirtualCPA :

Unfortunately, they have a duty to withhold amounts from your pay for tax, and there's no penalty for withholding too much

MyVirtualCPA :

Now, at the end of the year if you owe less tax you will get a refund

MyVirtualCPA :

So, the amount is not lost forever

MyVirtualCPA :

You will need to file your annual tax return in order to get these funds back.

Customer:

Is it possible for them to collect the check re-issue another check with the correct withholdings?

MyVirtualCPA :

It all depends on their system. You see, within a week or two of cutting you a check, your withholdings are sent to the IRS

MyVirtualCPA :

so, the funds they withheld could already be at the IRS and they couldn't do anything to get those back

Customer:

The check was cut late Mon. & issued today. What system would be necessary to retrieve the funds & re-issue?

MyVirtualCPA :

I highly doubt that they would do it, but you would have to speak to your payroll department

Customer:

Is there something that could make them "want to do it?"

MyVirtualCPA :

No, there is no penalty if they did not do it. It's up to them - they cannot be penalized for "withholding too much"

MyVirtualCPA :

But rest assured at the end of the year, when you file your return, you will get a refund

Customer:

I understand - if there's no advantage for them, why do it? Maybe because it's the RIGHT thing??

Customer:

Thank you.

MyVirtualCPA :

You're welcome. IS there anything else I can assist you with today?

Customer:

No, I don't think so.

MyVirtualCPA :

and I mean to say that you will get a refund if too much is withheld

MyVirtualCPA :

Once satisfied with our communication, please rate as 'excellent' so that I may receive credit for assisting you today

Customer:

I understand - thanks.

Megan C
Megan C, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 16,581
Experience: Licensed CPA, CFE, CMA, CGMA who teaches accounting courses at Master's Level
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Megan C
Megan C
Megan C, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 16,581
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Experience: Licensed CPA, CFE, CMA, CGMA who teaches accounting courses at Master's Level

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