Taxpayers tend to overlook certain tax deductions, tax credits, and even tax exemptions that can help them pay less in taxes. Understanding these available tax breaks is important so that you are not leaving money on the table come tax season.
People only sometimes take full advantage of the possible opportunities to reduce tax bills. The ever-changing landscape of federal and state laws can make it challenging to keep up with all the available deductions, credits, and exemptions. Here, we have gathered 16 overlooked options for saving money on taxes – so if you qualify for any of these reliefs, you could be leaving more cash in your wallet this year!
Most importantly, reach out to locate your free dedicated tax professional from PriorTax to walk you through your tax filing from start to finish. Get in touch with your tax professional now.
Gambling Losses Tax Deduction
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) allows a tax deduction for gambling losses for those who choose to itemize deductions. However, these write-offs are only available up to the amount of any gambling wins that were declared as taxable income. Additionally, it’s important to recognize that other forms of wagering can be taken into account when claiming deductions related to gambling, such as non-winning bingo tickets or lottery expenses.
If you believe that this tax deduction is the right move for you, be certain to save all of your gambling receipts – such as losing tickets. The IRS also recommends to keep a daily log of your gambling activity. This should include details like the date and type of bet, where it was placed, the names of those with you when wagering, and how much was won or lost in each instance.
Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit
The financial burden of childcare can be difficult to bear for many families. Fortunately, the child and dependent care tax credit is available to help lessen this expense’s impact on a household budget.
If your family requires childcare for children under 13 years old or a disabled dependent of any age, 2022 could be the time to claim a non-refundable tax credit. This credit can provide up to 35% or $3,000 of qualifying expenses for one child and $6,000 maximum for two or more qualifying children.
The child and dependent care tax credit can provide financial assistance to those paying for the cost of taking care of dependents. This could include elderly parents who are claimed as dependents on an adult child’s tax return, for example. In such cases, any related expenses may qualify for the credit above.
State Income Tax Refund
Taxpayers Can Avoid Reporting State Income Tax Refund. As outlined on Schedule A of the IRS Form 1040, many individuals can avoid including their state income tax refund when filing their federal income tax return. This is because when you claim the standard deduction for state and local taxes on your most recent federal tax return, that refund isn’t considered taxable.
When reporting a state income tax refund, you should not include it on your tax return if you did not itemize deductions for the year you received the refund. This avoids making an unnecessary report of the income. But suppose you are still determining whether the Form 1099-G related to your state income tax refund is taxable or not. In that case, consulting a professional might be wise to determine its taxable status.
Out-of-Pocket Charitable Tax Deductions
Giving to Charity Can Be Rewarded. You may be aware of the possibility of deducting larger charitable gifts that you made, such as by check or payroll deductions. However, it is worth noting that lesser amounts can still make a difference and should not be overlooked. In addition, you can also claim out-of-pocket expenses incurred while working for a charitable organization.
When it comes to charitable contributions, even something as simple as providing the ingredients for a meal prepared for a soup kitchen run by a nonprofit organization or buying stamps for a school’s fundraising effort can qualify. In other words, spending money supporting these causes is just as valid and beneficial to the cause as an outright donation.
It is important to maintain documentation of your charitable contributions. If the total value of your donations is $250 or higher, you must acquire a receipt verifying the contribution from the charity in question. In addition, for travel-related expenses associated with charitable activities, you are eligible to write off 14 cents per mile as well as parking fees and tolls.
State Sales Taxes
A deduction for state sales taxes can be a real boon for those who reside in states that don’t levy income taxes. If you opt to itemize deductions, you have the option of deducting either state taxes or your state and local sales taxes, whichever one offers the best financial relief.
Those who pay state income taxes can write off sales taxes in certain situations. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has a calculator that can help residents of different states figure out how much they can deduct, considering their income and applicable state and local tax rates. For instance, if you have made any large purchases like a vehicle, boat, or airplane, the calculator also includes the taxes paid on these items when figuring out total deductions for sales tax.
Regarding tax deductions, there is a limit for the amount of sales and property taxes that can be claimed – $10,000 annually ($5,000 if filing separately). Unfortunately, this amount includes both your local sales tax deduction and your local property taxes.
State Tax Paid for Previous Year
If you had to pay tax on your 2021 state income taxes, the cost is eligible to be used as a deduction when filing your 2022 federal return. Not only does this include the amount of taxes owed when filing, but it also takes into account any state income taxes taken out of your paycheck throughout the year or paid in quarterly estimated payments.
Additionally, the taxes withheld from your paycheck or paid in quarterly estimated payments should also be included. However, note that the deduction for state and local taxes is limited to $10,000 annually ($5,000 if married filing separately).
Dependent Tax Credit
You may not be aware, but claiming a dependent on your return can save you some money come tax time. The Dependent Tax Credit offers $500 for dependents who cannot qualify for the Child Tax Credit – such as children over 17 years old or elderly relatives in need of care in your home. So, if you have someone depending on you, remember to take advantage of this credit when filing!
It is crucial to be aware that for the 2022 tax year, the total of both the child credit and credit for other dependents may only be available when your adjusted gross income is $200,000. If filing jointly as a married couple, this number goes up to $400,000.