Answers to the Most Common Tax Return Questions for 2019

Answers to the Most Common Tax Return Questions for 2019

Answers to the Most Common Tax Return Questions for 2019

It’s that time of year when thousands of taxpayers have all kinds of questions. In fact, this year there could be even more questions than normal, thanks to the Tax Cut and Jobs Act. So what do you if you have a lot of questions? You could try finding answers on, or you could call the agency directly. Sometimes, you’ll get help you seek, but not always. You can contact your tax preparer for answers to your important tax questions, as well.

Common Tax Questions Answered

In the meantime, here are the answers to some of the most common tax return questions for the 2019 tax season. If your questions aren’t answered here, then you can contact GROCO for more help.

What happened to my tax bill? It was supposed to go down

This is one of the most common questions so far in 2019. And the most likely reason is because of the changes to the SALT deduction: state and local taxes. Because this deduction has been capped at $10,000, many people have lost a large deduction from their return, especially in high-tax states. Taking the larger standard deduction can help some taxpayers. Itemizing will still be better for some, but deductions are more limited now because of the SALT changes.

What happened to my refund?

Many taxpayers have been surprised with a much smaller refund this year. And in some cases, people have owed money to the IRS after filing. So what happened? All year long, the IRS warned taxpayers to check their withholding amount to match the new tax reform. Additionally, most people received bigger paychecks because fewer dollars were withheld each pay period. The problem is, many taxpayers probably didn’t notice the difference. But they’re definitely noticing it in their refunds.

Should I itemize or take the standard deduction?

We already mentioned it briefly, but for most taxpayers taking the new standard deduction will be the way to go this year. In fact, as many as 90 percent of taxpayers will use the standard deduction this season, according to estimates. If you still have a large amount of deductions, then run the numbers and see if your itemized deductions are greater than the standard deduction amount. If so, then itemizing still makes sense for you.

What other deductions and credits have changed?

Several other deductions and credits have changed this year.

  • The dependent exemption has been cut
  • The mortgage interest deduction has been changed. It now has a cap, which allows you to reduce interest on up to $750,000.
  • Fewer people will be affected by the Alternative Minimum Tax
  • Only military members can deduct moving expenses
  • You can’t deduct tax preparation fees
  • Home equity loans are only deductible if used for buying, building or improving the home that secures the loan

Can I still deduct alimony payments?

The old rules are still in effect for any divorce finalized before January 1, 2019. So for this year’s tax purposes you can still deduct alimony. Going forward, you’ll no longer be able to deduct alimony payments, and the person who receives the payments will not have to report the money as income.


We hope you found this article about “Answers to the Most Common Tax Return Questions for 2019” helpful.  If you have questions or need expert tax or family office advice that’s refreshingly objective (we never sell investments), please contact us or visit our Family office page  or our website at  Unfortunately, we no longer give advice to other tax professionals gratis.

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Alan Olsen, CPA

Alan Olsen, is the Host of the American Dreams Show and the Managing Partner of  GROCO is a premier family office and tax advisory firm located in the San Francisco Bay area serving clients all over the world.

Alan L. Olsen, CPA, Wikipedia Bio is a proud sponsor of The American Dreams Show.



The American Dreams show was the brainchild of Alan Olsen, CPA, MBA. It was originally created to fill a specific need; often inexperienced entrepreneurs lacked basic information about raising capital and how to successfully start a business.

Alan sincerely wanted to respond to the many requests from aspiring entrepreneurs asking for the information and introductions they needed. But he had to find a way to help in which his venture capital clients and friends would not mind.

The American Dreams show became the solution, first as a radio show and now with YouTube videos as well. Always respectful of interview guest’s time, he’s able to give access to individuals information and inspiration previously inaccessible to the first-time entrepreneurs who need it most.

They can listen to venture capitalists and successful business people explain first-hand, how they got to where they are, how to start a company, how to overcome challenges, how they see the future evolving, opportunities, work-life balance and so much more..

American Dreams discusses many topics from some of the world’s most successful individuals about their secrets to life’s success. Topics from guest have included:

Creating purpose in life / Building a foundation for their life / Solving problems / Finding fulfillment through philanthropy and service / Becoming self-reliant / Enhancing effective leadership / Balancing family and work…

Untitled_Artwork copy 4 (Also sponsored by GROCO) provides free access to content and world-class entrepreneurs, influencers and thought leaders’ personal success stories. To help you find your path in life to true, sustainable success & happiness.  It’s mission statement:

In an increasingly complex and difficult world, we hope to help you find your personal path in life and build a strong foundation by learning how others found success and happiness. True and sustainable success and happiness are different for each one of us but possible, often despite significant challenges.

Our mission at is to provide resources and firsthand accounts of how others found their paths in life, so you can do the same.

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