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Oregon taxpayers will receive 'kicker' rebate on 2021 tax returns thanks to $1.9 billion surplus

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SALEM, Ore. — Many state taxpayers will receive a surplus tax credit from Oregon's idiosyncratic "kicker" program, the Oregon Department of Revenue confirmed on Tuesday, thanks to a tax surplus of nearly $1.9 billion.

Instead of getting separate kicker checks, the surplus will materialize as a credit on taxpayers' 2021 state personal income tax returns when they file in 2022.

To calculate the amount of your credit, you can multiply your 2020 tax liability before any credits, which appears on line 22 of form OR-40, by 17.341%. Taxpayers who claimed a credit for tax paid to another state would need to subtract the credit amount from their liability before calculating the credit.

A "What's My Kicker?" calculator is also available on Revenue's website. To calculate your kicker, you enter your name, Social Security Number, and filing status for 2020 and 2021.

"You're eligible to claim the kicker if you filed a 2020 tax return and had tax due before credits," Revenue said in a statement. "Even if you don't have a filing obligation for 2021, you still must file a 2021 tax return to claim your credit."

There will be detailed information on how to claim your credit in the 2021 Oregon personal income tax return instructions: Form OR-40 for full-year Oregon residents, Form OR-40-P for part-year residents, and Form OR-40-N for nonresidents. Composite and fiduciary-income tax return filers are also eligible.

"Keep in mind that the state may use all or part of your kicker to pay any state debt you owe, such as tax due for other years, child support, court fines, or school loans," Revenue continued.

Free tax preparation services are available for low- to moderate-income taxpayers through AARP and CASH Oregon. United Way also offers free tax help through their MyFreeTaxes program. There are free or low-cost preparation options available for both federal and Oregon tax returns. Some software companies offer free software use and e-filing for eligible taxpayers.