Determining the amount of an individual's deduction on a tax returns involves determining the person's filing status and consulting the standard deduction table for the current year from the Internal Revenue Service, or IRS. Some individuals, such as those who are elderly, blind or victims of a disaster, are eligible for an increased standard deduction, notes efile.
To calculate the standard deduction, do the following.
- Determine filing status
- Determine eligibility for additional deductions
- Check the IRS standard deduction table
The taxpayer first must determine whether his or her filing status is single, married filing jointly or separately, head of household or widower, states the IRS.
People who are at least 65 years old or who are blind can get an increased deduction, with the amount depending on their filing status, mentions efile. Those who have faced a federally declared disaster can get a further deduction for how much they have lost.
After determining filing status and special eligibility, visit the IRS website and view chapter 20 of its publication. This chapter has tables that show the standard deduction for most people and for those who are blind or born before January 2, 1950. Look on the left column for the filing status that applies to see the amount. As of 2015, the standard deduction for blind individuals by filing status is the same as those who are 65 or older. Those who are declaring a higher deduction for a disaster loss should take the net amount of that loss and add it to the standard deduction that applies to them.