2.4 million reasons to check your state taxes REALLY carefully!

Just got your W2? Wondering how long you can leave it this year before working out how much of your I-can-see-why-I'm-not-living-in-Malibu income you owe the Governator and the feds?

Well, there's some bad news from Sacramento you need to be aware of before you have an even worse day than necessary.

The state agency that prints tax forms has distributed about 2.4 million screwed-up versions of Schedule CA (540), California Adjustments. If you're not aware of it, it could cost you a bundle. (Not a Malibu bundle, maybe, but enough.)

The Franchise Tax Board says that an early version of the form tells filers to enter information from the wrong federal tax box. The form is used to make adjustments to federal adjusted gross income and to claim itemized deductions.

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Line 38 of the form incorrectly states: "Enter the total amount of itemized deductions from your federal form 1040, Schedule A, lines 4, 9, 13, 19, 20, 27, and 28." It should say line 15 rather than 13. Consequently, you could miss claiming mortgage interest, points, mortgage insurance premiums (imagine missing all that on a Malibu mansion!) and investment interest.

Hard to believe, we know, that a once-a-year print job could have a serious (and potentially tres expensive) error in it. But look on the bright side ... imagine if they had to do this every month.

Hey! Maybe they could use a proofreader!

(Jack Grimshaw is OC Weekly's most awesome proofreader. - Ed.)


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