Preparing and Filing Your Individual State Tax Return
TurboTax offers tax preparation software for 43 states plus the District of Columbia.
The remaining 7 states do not collect personal income tax, which means we don't have a TurboTax product for Alaska, Florida, Nevada, South Dakota, Texas, Washington, or Wyoming.
For more information about the states that do not collect income taxes, see States That Don't Collect Income Tax.
For information about adding state tax programs in TurboTax, see Purchase Additional State Tax Programs.
If your state taxes individual income, also called personal services income:
- Each state where you worked but did not live (your nonresident state) may require you to file a nonresident state return. Prepare these states first.
- Unless your nonresident state happened to be Alaska, Florida, Nevada, New Hampshire, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Washington, and Wyoming, which do not tax earned income.
- The state where you lived (your resident state) taxes all of your income. Prepare this return after the nonresident and part-year resident states.
- Your resident state will credit for taxes paid to the nonresident state or states so you should not double-taxed. The state tax credit should be a dollar-for-dollar reduction.
Note: California residents cannot claim the nonresident state tax credit if the income tax is related to tax paid in District of Columbia (unless dual residence), Guam, Indiana, Oregon, or Virginia (unless dual residence).
Most nonresident state filing situations boil down to these steps:
- Prepare your federal tax return first following our step-by-step instructions below.
o Data input in your federal return will transfer to your state return(s) and
o Will let TurboTax know that you need to file more than one state return.
- Prepare a return for the nonresident state(s) before your resident state. You will only report the income and withholdings from that state.
- Prepare a return for your resident state. You will report all of your income (including income from the nonresident state).
- TurboTax calculates any credits for taxes paid to the nonresident state your resident state allows on your return so that you shouldn't get double-taxed on the same income.
Note, there are a very few states that don't get along very well, and although unusual, both states may tax certain income.
Note: TurboTax will calculate the credit for you, but you have to select the state(s) long form(s) to get the option, even if TurboTax chooses the short form(s) for you.
For example, if you live in Kansas but work in neighboring Missouri, you would file a nonresident Missouri return in addition to your usual Kansas return. You'd then take a credit for any taxes you paid to Missouri on your Kansas return.
If you live and work in reciprocal states, you may only need to complete Step 3.
Common state questions
For questions about state pricing, state forms availability, and deleting your state return, look at the left sidebar next to this article, then look for the links under the Other articles to try.
Other common state questions and issues:
- Preparing Tax Returns in Additional States
- Preparing a Second (or Third, or Fourth...) State Tax Return
- Filing a Non-Resident State Tax Return
- Filing a Part-Year State Tax Return
- Why does income from a non-income tax state get added to my return?
- Military Spouses and State Taxes
- Removing an Amended State Return
- Printed State Forms Look Odd
- E-file Your State Tax Return
- When will I Get my State Tax Refund?
- Entering estimated tax payments
- Calculate next year's estimated state taxes
For questions about state tax rules, see State Tax Agency Contact Information.
What if I need more help preparing my state return?
Let's face it. Although the States are United, each state likes to do things its own way – especially when it comes to taxation.
This raises a myriad of questions from our customers, like:
- How much can I deduct for the Virginia College Savings Plan?
- Do I have to file an Ohio CCA city tax form?
- What if I get income from renting a home in another state?
- Which state is my main or tax home?
- Kansas doesn't tax military retirement pay, so why is it showing up as income in TurboTax?
We can't possibly answer thousands of state-related questions in this article, and we're not even going to try. But we'll direct you to four great resources available within TurboTax or from your browser that will help you find answers to your questions.
Note: Different information is often available in each of the Learn More and Explain This links within TurboTax, the Support article search results, and in TurboTax Community. Check in all three places for answers to your questions.
- Learn More within TurboTax program Help
Don't forget about the TurboTax Program Help built into the program. TurboTax displays context-sensitive help which is tied to the particular screen you're on.
- Click on the Learn More or Explain This hyperlinks on many screens. These show additional details about the topics on that line or screen
- In the Online TurboTax software, click the blue Get Expert Help button in the right column. Then enter your question in the box titled Search TurboTax Support and click the blue Search button, or,
- In the CD/Desktop TurboTax software, click the Help Center (Windows) or Help (Mac) question mark icon in the blue circle in the upper right corner of your TurboTax screen for help with that screen.
- Then enter your question in the box titled Search TurboTax Support and click the blue Search button. A list of suggested articles appears.
- The list of answers include results from both TurboTax Support articles and TurboTax Community.
- Click to select a title closest to your question. Either the article or TurboTax Community post is shown.
- Many Support articles have internal links offering additional opportunities for answers.
- Return to the search answers to check for other possible articles.
TurboTax Community is an outstanding resource, not only for answers to state-related tax questions, but also for problems with your state return. In fact, TurboTax Community is usually where we first hear about state-related bugs, from customers like yourself.
In most TurboTax versions, look for TurboTax Community on the right side of your screen. If you don't see it, or if it wants a sign in but you'd would rather not, you can view the questions and answers by
- Visiting the TurboTax Community entry page.
- On the left column, go down to the third category Preparing Your State Return(s) and choose your state.
You don't have to sign in to benefit from TurboTax Community. But we do encourage it and hope you'll share your knowledge, questions, tips, and tricks with others in the Community.
Every state that collects income tax has its own website. They won't be able to help you with TurboTax problems, but if you are looking for tax information straight from the source, give your state's department of revenue website a look. There you'll find FAQs, forms and their instructions, bulletins, and contact information. Many states now allow you to look up the status of your state tax refund check online.
Click here for links to all 45 state websites. If you aren't sure where to go once you get to the state web site, look for the word "individual taxes" or similar to navigate to the right place.
What if I only want to file my state return?
First, you'll need to fill out your federal information so we can transfer it to your state return (see the Note at the top of this article).
- Select State Taxes on the left, then select Prepare State.
- Enter your state tax information by following the instructions. If you missed any federal info, TurboTax will guide you.
- When you come to the payment screen, you'll pay only for your state return.
- When you come to the e-file screen, click the link I'd like to change filing methods.
- For your federal return, select the radio dial next to I'm not ready to file. Click Save.
- Select Continue to file your state return.