How to Find Out If I Owe State Taxes

Most states charge an income tax, so chances are you've had to pay state taxes at some point in your professional life. In most cases, the state will send you letters asking for payment if you still owe taxes you were not aware of. If you’ve moved somewhere else, however, the state might not have your correct address and you could miss these notices. You can find out if you owe state taxes using one of several free methods.

Visit the state's Department of Revenue website. Some states list delinquent taxpayer information online, depending on how much you owe. In many cases, a state will file a tax lien against a person who owes back taxes. Tax liens are public record, which means anyone can have access to the information. In the search field of the Department of Revenue site, enter “Delinquent Taxpayers.” If your state lists the data on its website, you’ll see a link to the list appear in your results. If you find your name on the list, then you either owe state taxes or the state has inaccurate records. If your state doesn’t provide public data on its site, or if your name doesn’t appear on the list, you can use other methods to check for state tax balances.

Review your credit report. If you owe state taxes and a lien has been filed against you, the lien might appear on your credit report. The three major credit reporting bureaus are TransUnion, Experian and Equifax. The same information isn’t always included on all three reports, so you’ll need to check each one for lien information. You're entitled to one free report per year from each bureau through the AnnualCreditReport website.

Call the state's Department of Revenue. A revenue agent can access your account and tell you immediately if you have any tax balances due.

About the Author

With a background in taxation and financial consulting, Alia Nikolakopulos has over a decade of experience resolving tax and finance issues. She is an IRS Enrolled Agent and has been a writer for these topics since 2010. Nikolakopulos is pursuing Bachelor of Science in accounting at the Metropolitan State University of Denver.