Federal Income Tax Deduction - Give Me The Basics

By: Michael Williams

Federal income tax deduction, you've heard the term before, but what is it exactly? Well, what a federal income tax deduction is a statutory requirement of the United States law. Every single United States citizen must pay it, as long as they fall in a tax bracket, which is determined by the United States government. The way income tax reduction is calculated is by removing excluded income, exemptions and permissible deductions from gross income.

There are a few exemptions from having to pay the tax deduction. These include any money from life insurance earned, any money from gifts or inheritances, money from any personal injury settlements, and any interest earned on state or municipal bonds. There are some considerations when trying to take advantage of any of these exemptions in regards to the income tax deduction, so it is best if you have a tax preparer help you in these instances.

There are few other reasons you may have additional deductions beyond the federal tax deduction. In fact the tax deduction is considered the standard deduction. The following are called 'above-the-line' deductions. These include, trade and business expenses, alimony, IRA contributions, net capital losses and any money used on property that is used to generate an income. Someone who has a reduction may or may not be able to take advantage of these other deductions, but you should have a tax preparer help you with these if at all possible.

Those who earn over a certain amount and have a federal income tax deduction has something called an alternative minimum tax they can take advantage of. Because of having an income that exceeds a certain amount the person may have to pay more on their tax rebate then would allow for them to be able to take advantage of other deductions and credits. Therefore they have the option of claiming an alternative minimum tax instead.

There is one last option for almost anyone; to paying the federal tax deduction straight out and this itemized deduction. This can include state and local income and taxes, donations to charity, employee transfer costs, medical expenses, casualties and any loss that may have been incurred from this and any interest paid on mortgages. Itemized deduction can be a bit more of a hassle than it's worth though, depending on how many of these you qualify for, so check with your tax preparer ahead of time.

In the end is up to you whether or not you will go with just the standard deduction or with a more detailed one such as itemizing. But either way, at least now you hopefully will have a better understanding of some of things involved with a federal income tax reduction.

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