J.K. Lasser's Your Income Tax 2012 -  - E-Book

J.K. Lasser's Your Income Tax 2012 E-Book

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America's number one bestselling tax guide offers the bestbalance of thoroughness, organization, and usability For over half a century, more than 39 million Americans haveturned to J.K. Lasser for easy-to-follow, expert advice andguidance on planning and filing their taxes. Written by a team oftax specialists, J.K. Lasser's Your Income Tax 2012 includesall the outstanding features that have made this book the nation'sall-time top-selling tax guide. It covers some of the mostimportant topics associated with your taxes, from what must youreport as income and strategies that will save you on taxes to howmuch tax you actually owe and what deductions can you claim. As an added value, you can gain direct access to bonus materialsthrough jklasser.com, including links to the latest tax forms fromthe IRS, up-to-the-minute tax law changes, small business help, andmuch more. Filled with in-depth insights and timely advice, this isthe guide of choice for today's serious taxpayer. * Contains over 2,500 easy-to-use tax planning tips andstrategies and easy-to-understand coverage of the year's tax lawchanges * Includes filing tips and instructions to help you prepare your2011 return * Comprised of a quick reference section that highlights what'snew for 2011 as well as a topic index to help pinpoint the biggestmoney-saving deductions * Offers instruction for customers who use software or CPAs tofile their taxes Filled with practical tax guidance you can't find anywhere else,J.K. Lasser's Your Income Tax 2012 will help you plan andfile your 2011 tax return in the most efficient way possible.

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Contents

What’s New for 2011

Key Tax Numbers for 2011

Part 1: Filing Basics

Chapter 1: Filing Status

1.1 Which Filing Status Should You Use?

1.2 Tax Rates Based on Filing Status

1.3 Filing Separately Instead of Jointly

1.4 Filing a Joint Return

1.5 Nonresident Alien Spouse

1.6 Community Property Rules

1.7 Innocent Spouse Rules

1.8 Separate Liability Election for Former Spouses

1.9 Equitable Relief

1.10 Death of Your Spouse in 2011

1.11 Qualifying Widow(er) Status If Your Spouse Died in 2010 or 2009

1.12 Qualifying as Head of Household

1.13 Filing for Your Child

1.14 Return for Deceased

1.15 Return for an Incompetent Person

1.16 How a Nonresident Alien Is Taxed

1.17 How a Resident Alien Is Taxed

1.18 Who Is a Resident Alien?

1.19 When an Alien Leaves the United States

1.20 Expatriation Tax

Part 2: Filing Basics

Chapter 2: Wages, Salary, and Other Compensation

2.1 Salary and Wage Income

2.2 Constructive Receipt of Year-End Paychecks

2.3 Pay Received in Property Is Taxed

2.4 Commissions Taxable When Credited

2.5 Unemployment Benefits

2.6 Strike Pay Benefits and Penalties

2.7 Nonqualified Deferred Compensation

2.8 Did You Return Wages Received in a Prior Year?

2.9 Waiver of Executor’s and Trustee’s Commissions

2.10 Life Insurance Benefits

2.11 Educational Benefits for Employees’ Children

2.12 Sick Pay Is Taxable

2.13 Workers’ Compensation Is Tax Free

2.14 Disability Pensions

2.15 Stock Appreciation Rights (SARs)

2.16 Stock Options

2.17 Restricted Stock

Chapter 3: Fringe Benefits

3.1 Tax-Free Health and Accident Coverage Under Employer Plans

3.2 Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) and Archer MSAs

3.3 Reimbursements and Other Tax-Free Payments From Employer Health and Accident Plans

3.4 Group-Term Life Insurance Premiums

3.5 Dependent Care Assistance

3.6 Adoption Benefits

3.7 Education Assistance Plans

3.8 Company Cars, Parking, and Transit Passes

3.9 Working Condition Fringe Benefits

3.10 De Minimis Fringe Benefits

3.11 Employer-Provided Retirement Advice

3.12 Employee Achievement Awards

3.13 Employer-Furnished Meals or Lodging

3.14 Minister’s Rental or Housing Allowance

3.15 Cafeteria Plans Provide Choice of Benefits

3.16 Flexible Spending Arrangements

3.17 Company Services Provided at No Additional Cost

3.18 Discounts on Company Products or Services

Chapter 4: Dividend and Interest Income

4.1 Reporting Dividends and Mutual-Fund Distributions

4.2 Qualified Corporate Dividends Taxed at Favorable Capital Gain Rates

4.3 Dividends From a Partnership, S Corporation, Estate, or Trust

4.4 Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) Dividends

4.5 Taxable Dividends of Earnings and Profits

4.6 Stock Dividends on Common Stock

4.7 Dividends Paid in Property

4.8 Taxable Stock Dividends

4.9 Who Reports the Dividends

4.10 Year Dividends Are Reported

4.11 Distribution Not Out of Earnings: Return of Capital

4.12 Reporting Interest on Your Tax Return

4.13 Interest on Frozen Accounts Not Taxed

4.14 Interest Income on Debts Owed to You

4.15 Reporting Interest on Bonds Bought or Sold

4.16 Forfeiture of Interest on Premature Withdrawals

4.17 Amortization of Bond Premium

4.18 Discount on Bonds

4.19 Reporting Original Issue Discount on Your Return

4.20 Reporting Income on Market Discount Bonds

4.21 Discount on Short-Term Obligations

4.22 Stripped Coupon Bonds and Stock

4.23 Sale or Retirement of Bonds and Notes

4.24 State and City Interest Generally Tax Exempt

4.25 Taxable State and City Interest

4.26 Tax-Exempt Bonds Bought at a Discount

4.27 Treasury Bills, Notes, and Bonds

4.28 Interest on United States Savings Bonds

4.29 Deferring United States Savings Bond Interest

4.30 Minimum Interest Rules

4.31 Interest-Free or Below-Market-Interest Loans

4.32 Minimum Interest on Seller-Financed Sales

Chapter 5: Reporting Property Sales

5.1 General Tax Rules for Property Sales

5.2 How Property Sales Are Classified and Taxed

Capital Gains Rates and Holding Periods

5.4 Capital Losses and Carryovers

5.5 Capital Losses of Married Couples

5.6 Losses May Be Disallowed on Sales to Related Persons

5.7 Deferring or Excluding Gain on Small Business Stock Investment

5.8 Sample Entries of Capital Asset Sales on Form 8949 and on Schedule D

5.9 Counting the Months in Your Holding Period

5.10 Holding Period for Securities

5.11 Holding Period for Real Estate

5.12 Holding Period: Gifts, Inheritances, and Other Property

5.13 Calculating Gain or Loss

5.14 Amount Realized Is the Total Selling Price

5.15 Finding Your Cost

5.16 Unadjusted Basis of Your Property

5.17 Basis of Property You Inherited or Received as a Gift

5.18 Joint Tenancy Basis Rules for Surviving Tenants

5.19 Allocating Cost Among Several Assets

5.20 How To Find Adjusted Basis

5.21 Tax Advantage of Installment Sales

5.22 Figuring the Taxable Part of Installment Payments

5.23 Electing Not To Report on the Installment Method

5.24 Restriction on Installment Sales to Relatives

5.25 Contingent Payment Sales

5.26 Using Escrow and Other Security Arrangements

5.27 Minimum Interest on Deferred Payment Sales

5.28 Dispositions of Installment Notes

5.29 Repossession of Personal Property Sold on Installment

5.30 Boot in Like-Kind Exchange Payable in Installments

5.31 “Interest” Tax on Sales Over $150,000 Plus $5 Million Debt

5.32 Worthless Securities

5.33 Tax Consequences of Bad Debts

5.34 Four Rules To Prove a Bad Debt Deduction

5.35 Family Bad Debts

Chapter 6: Tax-Free Exchanges of Property

6.1 Trades of Like-Kind Property

6.2 Personal Property Held for Business or Investment

6.3 Receipt of Cash and Other Property—“Boot”

6.4 Time Limits for Deferred Exchanges

6.5 Qualified Exchange Accommodation Arrangements (QEAAs) for Reverse Exchanges

6.6 Exchanges Between Related Parties

6.7 Property Transfers Between Spouses and Ex-Spouses

6.8 Tax-Free Exchanges of Stock in Same Corporation

6.9 Joint Ownership Interests

6.10 Setting up Closely Held Corporations

6.11 Exchanges of Coins and Bullion

6.12 Tax-Free Exchanges of Insurance Policies

Chapter 7: Retirement and Annuity Income

7.1 Retirement Distributions on Form 1099-R

7.2 Lump-Sum Distributions

7.3 Lump-Sum Options If You Were Born Before January 2, 1936

7.4 Averaging on Form 4972

7.5 Capital Gain Treatment for Pre-1974 Participation

7.6 Lump-Sum Payments Received by Beneficiary

7.7 Tax-Free Rollovers From Qualified Plans

7.8 Direct Rollover or Personal Rollover

7.9 Rollover of Proceeds From Sale of Property

7.10 Distribution of Employer Stock or Other Securities

7.11 Survivor Annuity for Spouse

7.12 Court Distributions to Former Spouse Under a QDRO

7.13 When Retirement Benefits Must Begin

7.14 Payouts to Beneficiaries

7.15 Penalty for Distributions Before Age 59½

7.16 Restrictions on Loans From Company Plans

7.17 Tax Benefits of 401(k) Plans

7.18 Limit on Salary-Reduction Deferrals

7.19 Withdrawals From 401(k) Plans Restricted

7.20 Designated Roth Contributions to 401(k) Plans

7.21 Annuities for Employees of Tax-Exempts and Schools (403(b) Plans)

7.22 Government and Exempt Organization Deferred Pay Plans

7.23 Figuring the Taxable Part of Your Annuity

7.24 Life Expectancy Tables

7.25 When You Convert Your Endowment Policy

7.26 Reporting Employee Annuities

7.27 Simplified Method for Calculating Taxable Employee Annuity

7.28 Employee’s Cost in Annuity

7.29 Withdrawals From Employer’s Qualified Retirement Plan Before Annuity Starting Date

Chapter 8: IRAs

8.1 Starting a Traditional IRA

8.2 Traditional IRA Contributions Must Be Based on Earnings

8.3 Contributions to a Traditional IRA If You Are Married

8.4 IRA Deduction Restrictions for Active Participants in Employer Plan

8.5 Active Participation in Employer Plan

8.6 Nondeductible Contributions to Traditional IRAs

8.7 Penalty for Excess Contributions to Traditional IRAs

8.8 Taxable Distributions From Traditional IRAs

8.9 Partially Tax-Free Traditional IRA Distributions Allocable to Nondeductible Contributions

8.10 Tax-Free Rollovers and Direct Transfers to Traditional IRAs

8.11 Transfer of Traditional IRA to Spouse at Divorce

8.12 Penalty for Traditional IRA Withdrawals Before Age 59½

8.13 Mandatory Distributions From a Traditional IRA After Age 70½

8.14 Inherited Traditional IRAs

8.15 SEP Basics

8.16 Salary-Reduction SEP Set Up Before 1997

8.17 Who Is Eligible for a SIMPLE IRA?

8.18 SIMPLE IRA Contributions and Distributions

8.19 Roth IRA Advantages

8.20 Annual Contributions to a Roth IRA

8.21 Converting a Traditional IRA to a Roth IRA

8.22 Recharacterizations and Reconversions

8.23 Distributions From a Roth IRA

8.24 Distributions to Roth IRA Beneficiaries

Chapter 9: Income From Rents and Royalties

9.1 Reporting Rental Income and Expenses

9.2 Checklist of Rental Deductions

9.3 Distinguishing Between a Repair and an Improvement

9.4 Reporting Rents From a Multi-Unit Residence

9.5 Depreciation on Converting a Home to Rental Property

9.6 Renting a Residence to a Relative

9.7 Personal Use and Rental of a Residence During the Year

9.8 Counting Personal-Use Days and Rental Days for a Residence

9.9 Allocating Expenses of a Residence to Rental Days

9.10 Rentals Lacking Profit Motive

9.11 Reporting Royalty Income

9.12 Production Costs of Books and Creative Properties

9.13 Deducting the Cost of Patents or Copyrights

9.14 Intangible Drilling Costs

9.15 Depletion Deduction

9.16 Oil and Gas Percentage Depletion

Chapter 10: Loss Restrictions: Passive Activities and At-Risk Limits

10.1 Rental Activities

10.2 Rental Real Estate Loss Allowance of up to $25,000

10.3 Real Estate Professionals

10.4 Participation May Avoid Passive Loss Restrictions

10.5 Classifying Business Activities as One or Several

10.6 Material Participation Tests for Business

10.7 Tax Credits of Passive Activities Limited

10.8 Determining Passive or Nonpassive Income and Loss

10.9 Passive Income Recharacterized as Nonpassive Income

10.10 Working Interests in Oil and Gas Wells

10.11 Partners and Members of LLCs and LLPs

10.12 Form 8582

10.13 Suspended Losses Allowed on Disposition of Your Interest

10.14 Suspended Tax Credits

10.15 Personal Service and Closely Held Corporations

10.16 Sales of Property and of Passive Activity Interests

10.17 At-Risk Limits

10.18 What Is At Risk?

10.19 Amounts Not At Risk

10.20 At-Risk Investment in Several Activities

10.21 Carryover of Disallowed Losses

10.22 Recapture of Losses Where At Risk Is Less Than Zero

Chapter 11: Other Income

11.1 Prizes and Awards

11.2 Lottery and Sweepstake Winnings

11.3 Gambling Winnings and Losses

11.4 Gifts and Inheritances

11.5 Refunds of State and Local Income Tax Deductions

11.6 Other Recovered Deductions

11.7 How Legal Damages Are Taxed

11.8 Cancellation of Debts You Owe

11.9 Schedule K-1

11.10 How Partners Report Partnership Profit and Loss

11.11 When a Partner Reports Income or Loss

11.12 Partnership Loss Limitations

11.13 Unified Tax Audits of Partnerships

11.14 Stockholder Reporting of S Corporation Income and Loss

11.15 How Beneficiaries Report Estate or Trust Income

11.16 Reporting Income in Respect of a Decedent (IRD)

11.17 Deduction for Estate Tax Attributable to IRD

11.18 How Life Insurance Proceeds Are Taxed to a Beneficiary

11.19 A Policy With a Family Income Rider

11.20 Selling or Surrendering Life Insurance Policy

Chapter 12: Deductions Allowed in Figuring Adjusted Gross Income

12.1 Figuring Adjusted Gross Income (AGI)

12.2 Claiming Deductions From Gross Income

12.3 What Moving Costs Are Deductible?

12.4 The Distance Test

12.5 The 39-Week Test for Employees

12.6 The 78-Week Test for the Self-Employed and Partners

12.7 Claiming Deductible Moving Expenses

12.8 Reimbursements of Moving Expenses

Part 3: Claiming Deductions

Chapter 13: Claiming the Standard Deduction or Itemized Deductions

13.1 Claiming the Standard Deduction

13.2 Husbands and Wives Filing Separate Returns

13.3 Standard Deduction If 65 or Older or Blind

13.4 Standard Deduction for Dependents

13.5 Prepaying or Postponing Itemized Expenses

13.6 No Phaseout of Itemized Deductions

Chapter 14: Charitable Contribution Deductions

14.1 Deductible Contributions

14.2 Nondeductible Contributions

14.3 Contributions That Provide You With Benefits

14.4 Unreimbursed Expenses of Volunteer Workers

14.5 Support of a Student in Your Home

14.6 What Kind of Property Are You Donating?

14.7 Cars, Clothing, and Other Property Valued Below Cost

14.8 Bargain Sales of Appreciated Property

14.9 Art Objects

14.10 Interests in Real Estate

14.11 Life Insurance

14.12 Business Inventory

14.13 Donations Through Trusts

14.14 Records Needed To Substantiate Your Contributions

14.15 Form 8283 and Written Appraisal Requirements

14.16 Penalty for Substantial Overvaluation of Property

14.17 Ceiling on Charitable Contributions

14.18 Carryover for Excess Donations

14.19 Election To Reduce Fair Market Value by Appreciation

Chapter 15: Itemized Deduction for Interest Expenses

15.1 Home Mortgage Interest

15.2 Home Acquisition Loans

15.3 Home Equity Loans

15.4 Home Construction Loans

15.5 Home Improvement Loans

15.6 Mortgage Insurance Premiums and Other Payment Rules

15.7 Interest on Refinanced Loans

15.8 “Points”

15.9 Cooperative and Condominium Apartments

15.10 Investment Interest Limitations

15.11 Debts To Carry Tax-Exempt Obligations

15.12 Earmarking Use of Loan Proceeds

15.13 Year To Claim an Interest Deduction

15.14 Prepaid Interest

Chapter 16: Deductions for Taxes

16.1 Deductible Taxes

16.2 Nondeductible Taxes

16.3 State and Local Income Taxes or General Sales Taxes

16.4 Deducting Real Estate Taxes

16.5 Assessments

16.6 Tenants’ Payment of Taxes

16.7 Allocating Taxes When You Sell or Buy Realty

16.8 Automobile License Fees

16.9 Taxes Deductible as Business Expenses

16.10 Foreign Taxes

Chapter 17: Medical and Dental Expense Deductions

17.1 Medical Expenses Must Exceed 7.5% of AGI

17.2 Allowable Medical Care Costs

17.3 Nondeductible Medical Expenses

17.4 Reimbursements Reduce Deductible Expenses

17.5 Premiums of Medical Care Policies

17.6 Expenses of Your Spouse

17.7 Expenses of Your Dependents

17.8 Decedent’s Medical Expenses

17.9 Travel Costs May Be Medical Deductions

17.10 Schooling for the Mentally or Physically Disabled

17.11 Nursing Homes

Establishing medical purpose

17.12 Nurses’ Wages

17.13 Home Improvements as Medical Expenses

17.14 Costs Deductible as Business Expenses

17.15 Long-Term Care Premiums and Services

17.16 Life Insurance Used by Chronically ill or Terminally ill Persons

Chapter 18: Casualty and Theft Losses and Involuntary Conversions

18.1 Sudden Event Test for Casualty Losses

18.2 When To Deduct a Casualty Loss

18.3 Disaster Losses

18.4 Who May Deduct a Casualty Loss

18.5 Bank Deposit Losses

18.6 Damage to Trees and Shrubs

18.7 Deducting Damage to Your Car

18.8 Proving a Casualty Loss

18.9 Theft Losses

18.10 Proving a Theft Loss

18.11 Nondeductible Losses

18.12 Floors for Personal-Use Property Losses

18.13 Figuring Your Loss on Form 4684

18.14 Personal and Business Use of Property

18.15 Repairs May Be a “Measure of Loss”

18.16 Insurance Reimbursements

18.17 Excess Living Costs Paid by Insurance Are Not Taxable

18.18 Do Your Casualty or Theft Losses Exceed Your Income?

18.19 Defer Gain by Replacing Property

18.20 Involuntary Conversions Qualifying for Tax Deferral

18.21 How To Elect To Defer Tax

18.22 Time Period for Buying Replacement Property

18.23 Types of Qualifying Replacement Property

18.24 Cost of Replacement Property Determines Postponed Gain

18.25 Special Assessments and Severance Damages

18.26 Reporting Gains From Casualties

Chapter 19: Deducting Job Costs and Other Miscellaneous Expenses

19.1 2% AGI Floor Reduces Most Miscellaneous Expenses

19.2 Effect of 2% AGI Floor on Deductions

19.3 Checklist of Job Expenses Subject to the 2% AGI Floor

19.4 Job Expenses Not Subject to the 2% AGI Floor

19.5 Dues and Subscriptions

19.6 Uniforms and Work Clothes

19.7 Expenses of Looking for a New Job

19.8 Local Transportation Costs

19.9 Unusual Job Expenses

19.10 Computers Bought for Work

19.11 Cell Phones, Calculators, Copiers, Fax Machines, and Typewriters

19.12 Small Tools

19.13 Employee Home Office Deductions

19.14 Telephone Costs

19.15 Checklist of Deductible Investment Expenses

19.16 Costs of Tax Return Preparation and Audits

19.17 Deducting Legal Costs

19.18 Contingent Fees Paid Out of Taxable Awards

Chapter 20: Travel and Entertainment Expense Deductions

20.1 Deduction Guide for Travel and Transportation Expenses

20.2 Commuting Expenses

20.3 Overnight-Sleep Test Limits Deduction of Meal Costs

20.4 IRS Meal Allowance

20.5 Business Trip Deductions

20.6 When Are You Away From Home?

20.7 Fixing a Tax Home If You Work in Different Locations

20.8 Tax Home of Married Couple Working in Different Cities

20.9 Deducting Living Costs on Temporary Assignment

20.10 Business-Vacation Trips Within the United States

20.11 Business-Vacation Trips Outside the United States

20.12 Deducting Expenses of Business Conventions

20.13 Travel Expenses of a Spouse or Dependents

20.14 Restrictions on Foreign Conventions and Cruises

20.15 50% Deduction Limit

20.16 The Restrictive Tests for Meals and Entertainment

20.17 Directly Related Dining and Entertainment

20.18 Goodwill Entertainment

20.19 Home Entertaining

20.20 Your Personal Share of Entertainment Costs

20.21 Entertainment Costs of Spouses

20.22 Entertainment Facilities and Club Dues

20.23 Restrictive Test Exception for Reimbursements

20.24 50% Cost Limitation on Meals and Entertainment

20.25 Business Gift Deductions Are Limited

20.26 Record-Keeping Requirements

20.27 Proving Travel and Entertainment Expenses

20.28 Reporting T&E Expenses If You Are Self-Employed

20.29 Employee Reporting of Unreimbursed T&E Expenses

20.30 Tax Treatment of Reimbursements

20.31 What Is an Accountable Plan?

20.32 Per Diem Travel Allowance Under Accountable Plans

20.33 Automobile Mileage Allowance

20.34 Reimbursements Under Non-Accountable Plans

Chapter 21: Personal Exemptions

21.1 How Many Exemptions May You Claim?

21.2 Your Spouse as an Exemption

21.3 Qualifying Children

21.4 Qualifying Relatives

21.5 Meeting the Support Test for a Qualifying Relative

21.6 Multiple Support Agreements

21.7 Special Rule for Divorced or Separated Parents

21.8 The Dependent Must Meet a Citizen or Resident Test

21.9 The Dependent Does Not File a Joint Return

21.10 Spouses’ Names and Social Security Numbers on Joint Return

21.11 Reporting Social Security Numbers of Dependents

21.12 Personal Exemptions Not Subject to Phaseout for 2011 or 2012

Chapter 22: Figuring Your Regular Income Tax Liability

22.1 Taxable Income and Regular Income Tax Liability

22.2 Using the Tax Table

22.3 Tax Computation Worksheet

22.4 Tax Calculation If You Have Net Capital Gain or Qualified Dividends

22.5 Foreign Earned Income Tax Worksheet

22.6 Income Averaging for Farmers and Fishermen

22.7 Tax Credits

Part 4: Personal Tax Computations

Chapter 23: Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT)

23.1 Computing Alternative Minimum Tax on Form 6251

23.2 Adjustments for AMT

23.3 Tax Preference Items

23.4 Net Operating Losses

23.5 Tax Credits Allowed Against AMT

23.6 AMT Tax Credit From Regular Tax

23.7 Avoiding AMT

Chapter 24: Computing the “Kiddie Tax” on Your Child’s Investment Income

24.1 Filing Your Child’s Return

24.2 Children Subject to “Kiddie Tax” for 2011

24.3 Computing “Kiddie Tax” on Child’s Return

24.4 Parent’s Election To Report Child’s Dividends and Interest

Chapter 25: Personal Tax Credits Reduce Your Tax Liability

25.1 Overview of Personal Tax Credits

25.2 Child Tax Credit for Children Under Age 17

25.3 Figuring the Child Tax Credit

25.4 Qualifying for Child and Dependent Care Credit

25.5 Limits on the Dependent Care Credit

25.6 Earned Income Test for Dependent Care Credit

25.7 Credit Allowed for Care of Qualifying Persons

25.8 Expenses Qualifying for the Dependent Care Credit

25.9 Dependent Care Credit Rules for Separated Couples

25.10 Qualifying Tests for EIC

25.11 Income Tests for Earned Income Credit (EIC)

25.12 Look up EIC in Government Tables

25.13 Advance Payment of Earned Income Credit

25.14 Qualifying for the Adoption Credit

25.15 Claiming the Adoption Credit on Form 8839

25.16 Eligibility for the Saver’s Credit

25.17 Figuring the Saver’s Credit

25.18 Health Coverage Credit

25.19 Mortgage Interest Credit

25.20 District of Columbia First-Time Homebuyer Credit

25.21 Residential Energy Credits

25.22 Credits for Fuel Cell Vehicles and Plug-in Electric Vehicles

25.23 First-Time Homebuyer Credit

Chapter 26: Tax Withholdings

26.1 Withholdings Should Cover Estimated Tax

26.2 Income Taxes Withheld on Wages

26.3 Low Earners May Be Exempt From Withholding

26.4 Are You Withholding the Right Amount?

26.5 When To File a New Form W-4

26.6 Voluntary Withholding on Government Payments

26.7 When Tips Are Subject to Withholding

26.8 Withholding on Gambling Winnings

26.9 FICA Withholdings

26.10 Withholding on Retirement Distributions

26.11 Backup Withholding

Chapter 27: Estimated Tax Payments

27.1 Do You Owe an Estimated Tax Penalty for 2011?

27.2 Planning Estimated Tax Payments for 2012

27.3 Dates for Paying Estimated Tax Installments for 2012

27.4 Estimates by Husband and Wife

27.5 Adjusting Your Payments During the Year

Chapter 28: Tax Planning Overview

28.1 Tax-Saving Opportunities

28.2 When To Defer Income and Accelerate Deductions

28.3 Watch for Tax Law Changes

Part 5: Tax Planning

Chapter 29: Tax Savings for Residence Sales

29.1 Avoiding Tax on Sale of Principal Residence

29.2 Meeting the Ownership and Use Tests

29.3 Home Sales by Married Persons

29.4 Reduced Maximum Exclusion

29.5 Figuring Gain or Loss

29.6 Figuring Adjusted Basis

29.7 Personal and Business Use of a Home

29.8 No Loss Allowed on Personal Residence

29.9 Loss on Residence Converted to Rental Property

29.10 Loss on Residence Acquired by Gift or Inheritance

Chapter 30: Tax Rules for Investors in Securities

30.1 Planning Year-End Securities Transactions

30.2 Earmarking Stock Lots

30.3 Sale of Stock Dividends

30.4 Stock Rights

30.5 Short Sales of Stock

30.6 Wash Sales

30.7 Convertible Stocks and Bonds

30.8 Constructive Sales of Appreciated Financial Positions

30.9 Straddle Losses

30.10 Capital Gain Restricted on Conversion Transactions

30.11 Puts and Calls and Index Options

30.12 Investing in Tax-Exempts

30.13 Ordinary Loss for Small Business Stock (Section 1244)

30.14 Series EE and E Bonds

30.15 I Bonds

30.16 Trader, Dealer, or Investor?

30.17 Mark-to-Market Election for Traders

Chapter 31: Tax Savings for Investors in Real Estate

31.1 Real Estate Ventures

31.2 Sales of Subdivided Land—Dealer or Investor?

31.3 Exchanging Real Estate Without Tax

31.4 Timing Your Real Property Sales

31.5 Cancellation of a Lease

31.6 Sale of an Option

31.7 Granting of an Easement

31.8 Special Tax Credits for Real Estate Investments

31.9 Foreclosures, Repossessions, Short Sales, and Voluntary Conveyances to Creditors

31.10 Restructuring Mortgage Debt

31.11 Abandonments

31.12 Seller’s Repossession After Buyer’s Default on Mortgage

31.13 Foreclosure on Mortgages Other Than Purchase Money

31.14 Foreclosure Sale to Third Party

31.15 Transferring Mortgaged Realty

Chapter 32: Tax Rules for Investors in Mutual Funds

32.1 Timing of Your Investment Can Affect Your Taxes

32.2 Reinvestment Plans

32.3 Mutual-Fund Distributions Reported on Form 1099-DIV

32.4 Tax-Exempt Bond Funds

32.5 Fund Expenses

32.6 Tax Credits From Mutual Funds

32.7 How To Report Mutual Fund Distributions

32.8 Redemptions and Exchanges of Fund Shares

32.9 Basis of Redeemed Shares

32.10 Comparison of Basis Methods

Chapter 33: Educational Tax Benefits

33.1 Scholarships and Grants

33.2 Tuition Reductions for College Employees

33.3 How Fulbright Awards Are Taxed

33.4 United States Savings Bond Tuition Plans

33.5 Contributing to a Qualified Tuition Program (Section 529 Plan)

33.6 Distributions From Qualified Tuition Programs (Section 529 Plans)

33.7 Education Tax Credits

33.8 American Opportunity Credit

33.9 Lifetime Learning Credit

33.10 Income Phaseout of Education Credits

33.11 Contributing to a Coverdell Education Savings Account (ESA)

33.12 Distributions From Coverdell ESAs

33.13 Tuition and Fees Deduction

33.14 Student Loan Interest Deduction

33.15 Types of Deductible Work-Related Costs

33.16 Work-Related Tests for Education Costs

33.17 Local Transportation and Travel Away From Home To Take Courses

Chapter 34: Special Tax Rules for Senior Citizens

34.1 Senior Citizens Get Certain Filing Breaks

34.2 Social Security Benefits Subject to Tax

34.3 Computing Taxable Social Security Benefits

34.4 Election for Lump-Sum Social Security Benefit Payment

34.5 Retiring on Social Security Benefits

34.6 How Tax on Social Security Reduces Your Earnings

34.7 Claiming the Credit for the Elderly and Disabled

34.8 Base Amount for the Elderly or Disabled Credit

34.9 Reduction of the Base Amount and Liability Limitation for the Credit

34.10 Tax Effects of Moving to a Continuing Care Facility

34.11 Medicare Part B and Part D Premiums for 2012

Chapter 35: Members of the Armed Forces

35.1 Taxable Armed Forces Pay and Benefits

35.2 Tax-Free Armed Forces Benefits

35.3 Deductions for Armed Forces Personnel

35.4 Tax-Free Pay for Service in Combat Zone

35.5 Tax Deadlines Extended for Combat Zone or Contingency Operation Service

35.6 Tax Forgiveness for Combat Zone or Terrorist or Military Action Deaths

35.7 Extension To Pay Your Tax When Entering the Service

35.8 Tax Information for Reservists

Chapter 36: How To Treat Foreign Earned Income

36.1 Claiming the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion

36.2 What Is Foreign Earned Income?

36.3 Qualifying for the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion

36.4 How To Treat Housing Costs

36.5 Meeting the Foreign Residence or Physical Presence Test

36.6 Claiming Deductions

36.7 Exclusion Not Established When Your Return Is Due

36.8 Tax-Free Meals and Lodging for Workers in Camps

36.9 Virgin Islands, Samoa, Guam, and Northern Marianas

36.10 Earnings in Puerto Rico

36.11 Tax Treaties With Foreign Countries

36.12 Exchange Rates and Blocked Currency

36.13 Reporting Foreign Bank Accounts

36.14 Foreign Tax Credit

Chapter 37: Planning Alimony and Marital Settlements

37.1 Planning Alimony Agreements

37.2 Decree or Agreement Required

37.3 Cash Payments Required

37.4 Payments Must Stop at Death

37.5 Child Support Payments Are Not Alimony

37.6 No Minimum Payment Period for Alimony

37.7 3rd Year Recapture If Alimony Drops by More Than $15,000

37.8 Legal Fees of Marital Settlements

Chapter 38: Household Employment Taxes (“Nanny Tax”)

38.1 Who Is a Household Employee?

38.2 Social Security and Medicare (FICA) Taxes for Household Employees

38.3 Filing Schedule H To Report Household Employment Taxes

38.4 Federal Unemployment Taxes (FUTA) for Household Employees

Chapter 39: Gift and Estate Tax Planning

39.1 Gifts of Appreciated Property

39.2 Gift Tax Basics

39.3 Filing a Gift Tax Return

39.4 Gift Tax Credit

39.5 Custodial Accounts for Minors

39.6 Trusts in Family Planning

39.7 Estate Tax Basics

39.8 Take Inventory of Your Potential Estate

39.9 Valuing Your Potential Estate

39.10 Estimating Potential Estate Tax Liability

39.11 Reducing or Eliminating a Potential Estate Tax

Chapter 40: Income or Loss From Your Business or Profession

40.1 Forms of Doing Business

40.2 Reporting Self-Employed Income

40.3 Accounting Methods for Reporting Business Income

40.4 Tax Reporting Year for Self-Employed

40.5 Reporting Certain Payments and Receipts to the IRS

40.6 Filing Schedule C

40.7 Deductions for Professionals

40.8 Nondeductible Expense Items

40.9 How Authors and Artists May Write Off Expenses

40.10 Deducting Expenses of a Sideline Business or Hobby

40.11 Deducting Expenses of Looking for a New Business

40.12 Home Office Deduction

40.13 What Home Office Expenses Are Deductible?

40.14 Allocating Expenses to Business Use

40.15 Business Income May Limit Home Office Deductions

40.16 Home Office for Sideline Business

40.17 Depreciation of Office in Cooperative Apartment

40.18 Net Operating Losses (NOLs)

40.19 Your Net Operating Loss

40.20 How To Report a Net Operating Loss

40.21 How To Carry Back Your Net Operating Loss

40.22 Election To Carry Forward Losses

40.23 Overview of the Domestic Production Activities Deduction

40.24 Qualified Production Activities

40.25 Figuring the Deduction

40.26 Business Credits

40.27 Filing Schedule F

40.28 Farming Expenses

Part 6: Business Tax Planning

Chapter 41: Retirement and Medical Plans for Self-Employed

41.1 Overview of Retirement and Medical Plans

41.2 Choosing a Keogh Plan

41.3 Choosing a SEP

41.4 Deductible Keogh or SEP Contributions

41.5 How To Claim the Keogh or SEP Deduction

41.6 How To Qualify a Keogh Plan or SEP Plan

41.7 Annual Keogh Plan Return

41.8 How Keogh Plan Distributions Are Taxed

41.9 SIMPLE IRA Plans

41.10 Health Savings Account (HSA) Basics

41.11 Limits on Deductible HSA Contributions

41.12 Distributions From HSAs

41.13 Archer MSAs

41.14 Small Business Health Tax Credit

Chapter 42: Claiming Depreciation Deductions

42.1 What Property May Be Depreciated?

42.2 Claiming Depreciation on Your Tax Return

42.3 First-Year Expensing Deduction

42.4 MACRS Recovery Periods

42.5 MACRS Rates

42.6 Half-Year Convention for MACRS

42.7 Last Quarter Placements—Mid-Quarter Convention

42.8 150% Rate Election

42.9 Straight-Line Depreciation

42.10 Computers and Other Listed Property

42.11 Assets in Service Before 1987

42.12 Straight-Line Recovery for Assets in Service Before 1987

42.13 MACRS for Real Estate Placed in Service After 1986

42.14 Demolishing a Building

42.15 Leasehold Improvements

42.16 Depreciating Real Estate Placed in Service After 1980 and Before 1987

42.17 When MACRS Is Not Allowed

42.18 Amortizing Goodwill and Other Intangibles (Section 197)

42.19 Deducting the Cost of Computer Software

42.20 Amortizing Song Rights

42.21 Bonus Depreciation

Chapter 43: Deducting Car and Truck Expenses

43.1 Standard Mileage Rate

43.2 Expense Allocations

43.3 Depreciation Restrictions on Cars, Trucks, and Vans

43.4 Annual Ceilings on Depreciation

43.5 MACRS Rates for Cars, Trucks, and Vans

43.6 Straight-Line Method

43.7 Depreciation for Year Vehicle Is Disposed Of

43.8 Depreciation After Recovery Period Ends

43.9 Trade-in of Business Vehicle

43.10 Recapture of Deductions on Business Car, Truck, or Van

43.11 Keeping Records of Business Use

43.12 Leased Business Vehicles: Deductions and Income

Chapter 44: Sales of Business Property

44.1 Depreciation Recaptured as Ordinary Income on Sale of Personal Property

44.2 Depreciation Recaptured as Ordinary Income on Sale of Real Estate

44.3 Recapture of First-Year Expensing

44.4 Gifts and Inheritances of Depreciable Property

44.5 Involuntary Conversions and Tax-Free Exchanges

44.6 Installment Sale of Depreciable Property

44.7 Sale of a Proprietorship

44.8 Property Used in a Business (Section 1231 Assets)

44.9 Sale of Property Used for Business and Personal Purposes

44.10 Should You Trade in Business Equipment?

44.11 Corporate Liquidation

Chapter 45: Figuring Self-Employment Tax

45.1 What Is Self-Employment Income?

45.2 Partners Pay Self-Employment Tax

45.3 Schedule SE

45.4 How Wages Affect Self-Employment Tax

45.5 Optional Method If 2011 Was a Low-Income or Loss Year

45.6 Self-Employment Tax Rules for Certain Positions

Chapter 46: Filing Your Return

46.1 Keeping Tax Records

46.2 Getting Ready To File Your Return

46.3 Applying for an Extension

46.4 Getting Your Refund

46.5 Paying Taxes Due

46.6 Electronic Filing

46.7 Notify the IRS of Address Changes

46.8 Interest on Tax Underpayments

46.9 Tax Penalties for Late Filing and Late Payment

Part 7: Filing Your Return and What Happens After You File

Chapter 47: Filing Refund Claims, and Amended Returns

47.1 Filing An Amended Return

47.2 When To File a Refund Claim

47.3 Joint Refund Claims

47.4 Stating the Reasons for Refund Claim

47.5 Quick Refund Claims

47.6 Interest Paid on Refund Claims

47.7 Refunds Withheld To Cover Debts

47.8 Amended Returns Showing Additional Tax

47.9 Penalty for Filing Excessive Refund Claim

Chapter 48: If the IRS Examines Your Return

48.1 Odds of Being Audited

48.2 When the IRS Can Assess Additional Taxes

48.3 Audit Overview

48.4 Preparing for the Audit

48.5 Handling the Audit

48.6 Tax Penalties for Inaccurate Returns

48.7 Agreeing to the Audit Changes

48.8 Disputing the Audit Changes

48.9 Offer in Compromise

48.10 Recovering Costs of a Tax Dispute

48.11 Suing the IRS for Unauthorized Collection

Part 8: 2011 Tax Table and EIC Table

Glossary

Index

Staff for This Book

J.K. Lasser Editorial

Elliott Eiss, Member of the New York Bar, Senior Editor

Barbara Weltman, Member of the New York Bar, Contributing Editor

Angelo C. Jack, Senior Production Editor

Carolyn Francis, Copyediting and Proofreading

William Hamill, Production Assistant

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ISBN 978-1118-07254-7

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Seventy-Fifth Edition

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