Who Qualifies for “Head of Household” Tax Filing Status?

Revisor

When you file your tax return, you must check one of the following filing statuses: Single, married filing jointly, married filing separately, head of household or qualifying widow(er). Who qualifies to file a return as a head of household, which is more favorable than single? To qualify, you must maintain a household, which for more than half the year, is …

How to Ensure Life Insurance Isn’t Part of Your Taxable Estate

Revisor

If you have a life insurance policy, you may want to ensure that the benefits your family will receive after your death won’t be included in your estate. That way, the benefits won’t be subject to federal estate tax. Current exemption amounts For 2021, the federal estate and gift tax exemption is $11.7 million ($23.4 million for married couples). That’s …

New Law Tax Break May Make Child Care Less Expensive

Revisor

The new American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) provides eligible families with an enhanced child and dependent care credit for 2021. This is the credit available for expenses a taxpayer pays for the care of qualifying children under the age of 13 so that the taxpayer can be gainfully employed. Note that a credit reduces your tax bill dollar for dollar. …

Estimated Tax Payments: The Deadline for the First 2021 Installment is Coming Up

Revisor

April 15 is not only the deadline for filing your 2020 tax return, it’s also the deadline for the first quarterly estimated tax payment for 2021, if you’re required to make one. You may have to make estimated tax payments if you receive interest, dividends, alimony, self-employment income, capital gains, prize money or other income. If you don’t pay enough …

Retiring Soon? Recent Law Changes May Have an Impact on Your Retirement Savings

Revisor

If you’re approaching retirement, you probably want to ensure the money you’ve saved in retirement plans lasts as long as possible. If so, be aware that a law was recently enacted that makes significant changes to retirement accounts. The SECURE Act, which was signed into law in late 2019, made a number of changes of interest to those nearing retirement. …

Didn’t Contribute to an IRA Last Year? There Still May be Time

Revisor

If you’re getting ready to file your 2020 tax return, and your tax bill is higher than you’d like, there might still be an opportunity to lower it. If you qualify, you can make a deductible contribution to a traditional IRA right up until the April 15, 2021 filing date and benefit from the tax savings on your 2020 return. …

2021 Individual Taxes: Answers to Your Questions About Limits

Revisor

Many people are more concerned about their 2020 tax bills right now than they are about their 2021 tax situations. That’s understandable because your 2020 individual tax return is due to be filed in less than three months (unless you file an extension). However, it’s a good idea to acquaint yourself with tax amounts that may have changed for 2021. …

Did You Make Donations in 2020? There’s Still Time to Get Substantiation

Revisor

If you’re like many Americans, letters from your favorite charities may be appearing in your mailbox acknowledging your 2020 donations. But what happens if you haven’t received such a letter — can you still claim a deduction for the gift on your 2020 income tax return? It depends. What is required To support a charitable deduction, you need to comply …

The Power of the Tax Credit for Buying an Electric Vehicle

Revisor

Although electric vehicles (or EVs) are a small percentage of the cars on the road today, they’re increasing in popularity all the time. And if you buy one, you may be eligible for a federal tax break. The tax code provides a credit to purchasers of qualifying plug-in electric drive motor vehicles including passenger vehicles and light trucks. The credit …

Don’t Forget to Take Required Minimum Distributions This Year

Revisor

If you have a traditional IRA or tax-deferred retirement plan account, you probably know that you must take required minimum distributions (RMDs) when you reach a certain age — or you’ll be penalized. The CARES Act, which passed last March, allowed people to skip taking these withdrawals in 2020 but now that we’re in 2021, RMDs must be taken again. …