Tax refunds: Red states doing better than blue states

Most American taxpayers got tax cuts last year, thanks to the new tax law. They just may not have realized it. And filing their returns Monday won’t help make it clearer: Refunds have barely risen this year.

Final data from the IRS won’t be available for some time, but the tax preparer H<><><><><><>&R Block reports that on average, its clients’ tax liability — how much federal tax they paid — is down by a lot, almost 25%./ppBut the average refund — how much they get back from the government after filing their annual returns — is up just 1.4%. Barely at all. (That’s just for people who got refunds in both the 2017 and 2018 tax years. It does not include the people who went from getting a refund last year to paying the IRS this year.)/ppAnd there’s a political divide: Red states will enjoy the biggest increase in refunds. However, several blue states are seeing the largest average tax cuts compared with last year./ppH<><>R Block processes around 20 million returns each year and its figures here are for returns filed through the end of March./ppThese numbers will change, since many people who will owe money may not have filed yet. People who expect refunds tend to file earlier, according to Nathan Rigney, lead tax research analyst at the Tax Institute at H<><> <><><><><><><><> <><><><><><><><><><> <><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>