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General Tax Info

Certain expenditures qualify as a deduction for your taxes. These expenditures are referred to as itemized deductions.

In general, if your total itemized deductions exceed the standard deduction, you should itemize. This includes these situations:

  • You do not qualify for the standard deduction, or the amount of the standard deduction is limited
  • You have large, uninsured medical and dental expenses
  • You pay interest and taxes on a home or personal property
  • You have large, unreimbursed employee business expenses
  • You have large, uninsured casualty or theft losses
  • You make large contributions to qualified charities

Most deductions are subject to the 2% of adjusted gross income (AGI) rule. This means the sum of expenditures greater than 2% of your total AGI are deductible in the amount that exceeds the 2%. Medical and dental expenses that are greater than 7.5% of your total AGI are deductible in the amount that exceeds the 7.5%.
Qualifying Expenditures

  • Medical and dental expenses
  • State and local income taxes or sales tax
  • Real estate and personal property taxes
  • Home mortgage and investment interest
  • Home mortgage points
  • Charitable contributions
  • Casualty and theft losses
  • Job expenses
  • Miscellaneous deductions

Individuals Who Must Itemize

  • A married person whose filing status is married filing separately and whose spouse is itemizing deductions.
  • An individual who is a nonresident alien or dual-status alien during any part of the current tax year. Dual status occurs when you are considered both a nonresident and resident alien during the same year.
  • An individual who changes his or her annual accounting cycle and is filing a return for a period of less than 12 months.

Income Limits for Itemizing Deductions

Certain itemized deductions are limited if the 2009 adjusted gross income exceeds $166,800 for married filing jointly, or $83,400 for married filing separately. Tax year 2009 is the last year for AGI limits on itemized deductions.

For more information, see IRS Instructions for Schedule A.



> Filing Requirements
> Exemptions
> Itemized Deductions
> Federal Withholding
> Standard Deductions
> Tax Credits
> Education Credits
> Refund Cycle Chart

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