As April 15th looms on the horizon, retailers understand the financial strain that this day can bring. Tax Day can be a stressful time for many individuals, as the looming deadline to file taxes often comes with financial concerns. But there are ways that retailers offer tax relief for tax payers during this season.
Many well-known retailers across the nation have recognized the significance of Tax Day and are keen on lightening the load for their customers. Freebies and Special Promotions: Some retailers take it a step further by offering complimentary items or special promotions. This might include a free coffee, a meal deal, or even a relaxation service to help you de-stress after completing your taxes.
Tax Deductions for Dietary Needs: It’s a lesser-known fact that individuals with certain medical conditions can claim deductions for the cost of special dietary foods. Tax laws in the United States provide avenues for taxpayers to claim deductions related to qualified medical expenses, and this includes the cost of special dietary foods prescribed by a medical professional.
Additionally, it is advisable to consult with a qualified tax professional who can provide guidance on claiming these deductions accurately.
Whether it’s through tax deductions or the perks offered by retailers, there are ways to make Tax Day a bit more manageable and even enjoyable.
Tax deductions are a great way to save money on regular purchases within certain categories. The standard deduction alone saved some 85 million American’s a little over 0.5 trillion dollars in 2009. But the real way to claim deductions is by filing a Schedule A along with your 1040 long form. Categories of deductions available on the Schedule A include Medical, Taxes, Charity, Education, Mortgage and Causalities.
Deductions for Medical Expenses: Medical expenses are deductible on your tax return once you clear a certain level of your income in expenses, 7.5%. For this reason it is a good ideal to group major medical procedure in the same year to allow for them to be deductible. Items such as doctor’s bills, hospital visits, operations, prescriptions, premiums, and health care for dependents are deductible.
Taxes for State and Local: The state and the local government in your area collects income taxes, that’s the bad news. The good news is that the Federal government allows to deduct these tax expenses. Check the IRS website for a list of local and state taxes that you can deduct as not all taxes are deductible. TurboTax also is a good resource for what taxes you can deduct when preparing your tax return.
Charity Donations: Donations to charitable organizations, such as churches, are deductible without limit. When you provide transportation for a charitable event you can deduct the mileage. And when you purchase a ticket to a charitable event that is more expensive than the value of the service or entertainment provided, you can deduct the difference. Keep records of all your gifts.
Education Expenses: The federal government wants to support education and therefore gives tax deductions for expenses incurred while obtaining education degrees. The rules have changed recently with ARRA (the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act) but generally provides $2,500 per student in deductions for education.
With the recent Chile Earthquake on the minds of millions of Americans, the US House of Representatives is looking to add a Chile donation special tax deduction similar to the one in place for Haiti relief efforts. If the measure is approved, charitable donations sent to help Chile victims of the earthquake will be deductable on taxpayer’s 2009 tax returns although the donations are actually being made in 2010. Donations would need to be made before April 15th, the tax filing deadline.
The US House of Representative bill was passed without any opposition with the bill now on its way to the Senate for approval. An additional measure in the bill allows for Haitian donations to be made up until April 15th, an extension of over a month. So holding off until the bill passes will be helpful for those looking to make such donations.
If you have already filed your 2009 taxes but do not want to wait until next year to claim your charitable donations, amending your return by filing a 1040X will provide you the deduction this calendar year.