This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS - See his portfolio and get alerts BEFORE every trade. Learn more NOW!

10 Commonly Overlooked Tax Deductions

By Robert Flach

NEW YORK ( MainStreet) -- Most taxpayers probably know that the key to getting the best possible refund (or at least the lowest possible tax burden) is to milk the deductions to their absolute maximum, taking advantage of every single one for which they qualify.

But the more complicated process of itemizing deductions doesn't really pay unless the total you can deduct exceeds the Standard Deduction for your filing status -- $5,800 for single filers or married taxpayers filing separately, $11,600 for married couples filing jointly and for qualifying widow(er)s, and $8,500 for those filing as head of household.

These commonly overlooked deductions can ensure you get the most back possible.

The additional standard deduction for people 65 or older and/or blind taxpayers are $1,450 for single and head-of-household filers and $1,150 for married filers (joint and separate) and qualifying widow(er)s.

As a general rule, remember that medical expenses are only deductible to the extent that the total exceeds 7.5% of your Adjusted Gross Income, and most Miscellaneous Deductions are allowed only to the extent the total exceeds 2% of AGI.

>>The Most Commonly Asked Tax Questions

If you're one of those taxpayers who will benefit from itemizing your deductions on Schedule A, don't forget the following 10 often-overlooked deductions.

Travel expenses
Travel expenses to and from doctors, dentists, hospitals and other health care providers to get medical care and round-trip travel costs to visit a sick spouse or a dependent are deductible if the visits are recommended by a doctor as part of the patient's treatment.

If you take a taxi, bus, train or ambulance you can deduct the actual expense of the trip, and if you drive you can deduct 19 cents per mile traveled between Jan. 1 and June 31 and 23.5 cents per mile driven from July 1 to Dec. 31, plus any parking fees and tolls.

The cost of lodging you (or anyone accompanying a patient, such as a parent or spouse) while away from home for medical care is also deductible, up to a maximum of $50 per person per night. Note that you can deduct the cost of the hotel room, but not the dinner bill.

1 of 4

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Try it NOW
Only $9.95
Try it NOW
14-Days Free
Try it NOW

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
SYM TRADE IT LAST %CHG
AAPL $128.49 -0.67%
FB $80.89 1.60%
GOOG $573.21 -0.08%
TSLA $202.43 1.40%
YHOO $44.00 3.20%

Markets

DOW 18,096.96 -106.41 -0.58%
S&P 500 2,098.98 -8.80 -0.42%
NASDAQ 4,967.6550 -12.2460 -0.25%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs