DoD

March 21, 2014

Tax tips for military personnel

The tax season is well underway and, so far the Edwards Tax Center has processed more than 200 returns and gotten our Edwards members more than $450,000 in refunds.

If you have not yet filed your taxes, and would like to use our free tax filing services, please call the Edwards Legal Office at (661) 277-4310. The Tax Center will be closing April 10, but call us today to make your appointment!

Here are a few tips regarding filing your taxes:

* If you are in the military, you may file your federal return jointly, but can file state returns separately. If you elect to do this, you may still file your federal return electronically, but you must mail your state return in.

* It is not too late to contribute to your Traditional Thrift Savings Plan or 2013 Traditional IRA. You have until April 15 to do so. These contributions lower your taxable income, reducing your overall tax liability.

* If you have made a large vehicle purchase in 2013, the sales tax on that vehicle may be deductible. Please bring in your purchase receipt from the dealership when you come in for your tax appointment.

* If you have a rental property, make sure you bring receipts paid for homeowner’s insurance, management fees, depreciation amounts, repairs and maintenance, and mortgage interest paid. All of this is deductible on your rental income, and can greatly lower the tax you will have to pay on your rental home.

* Gambling losses are tax deductible only to the extent of your gambling winnings. Your gambling winnings are also taxable as income. This includes winnings from lotteries, raffles, and casinos.

* When itemizing deductions, if you make a donation to a thrift store, homeless shelter, etc., it is important to list out each item that you donate as well as its corresponding value. This will help in the event that you are audited by the IRS.

* If you are selling your primary residence, tax law may allow you to exclude up to $250,000 (if filing single) or $500,000 (if married, filing jointly). You must have used the house as your primary residence for at least a period of two years within the last 5 years from the date of sale.

Once your return has been filed, it typically takes two to three weeks to see your refund if you are having it directly deposited into your bank account.

“Thank you all for your support of the Edwards AFB Tax Center,” said a Judge Advocate Office spokesperson. “We are proud to assist military members and their families with filing their taxes.”

For more information, questions or to make an appointment, call the legal office at (661) 277-4310.




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