Taxes

A:

Typical real estate property taxes are deductible, as of 2014. Amounts paid for local and state property taxes can be included on itemized federal tax returns. The deduction is for the actual payment to the taxing authority, not the amounts paid in to escrow.

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  • What does the U.S. government do with tax money?

    Q: What does the U.S. government do with tax money?

    A: Public works are financed using tax dollars. The largest portion of tax revenues (24 percent) are spent on Social Security by way of payments to the elderly and disabled.
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  • How do you find out property taxes by address?

    Q: How do you find out property taxes by address?

    A: SFGate Home Guides explains that since property taxes are public records, information about the taxes levied on a specific address are obtainable from the local government entity that maintains those records, which is typically the county assessor's office or recorder's office. Many localities make this information available online.
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  • What are energy tax credits?

    Q: What are energy tax credits?

    A: Energy tax credits are incentives to lower taxes for people who use alternative energy resources. These are authorized by the U.S. Congress. They work by reducing income tax owed by a dollar-for-dollar basis. In contrast, a tax deduction lowers the amount of income subject to tax.
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  • Which states have the highest income taxes?

    Q: Which states have the highest income taxes?

    A: In addition to paying a federal income tax, most Americans have to pay an annual state income tax. Some states have higher rates than others, with California topping the list in 2014. Other factors such as local property tax rates may influence how expensive it is to live in a particular state.
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  • Which states have no sales tax?

    Q: Which states have no sales tax?

    A: As of 2014, there are four U.S. states that do not impose a sales tax on consumers: Delaware, Montana, New Hampshire and Oregon. While Alaska does not impose a state sales tax, city governments do have the right to impose some sales tax there, meaning the average Alaskan retail shopper pays about 1.69 percent in sales tax.
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  • How many years can you file back taxes?

    Q: How many years can you file back taxes?

    A: Back taxes can be filed for up to 10 years after the tax year in which the resident neglected to file income taxes, according to ETaxes.com. After 10 years, the statute of limitations runs out for the Internal Revenue Service to collect back taxes in most states. In a few states, the statute of limitations never runs out, meaning back taxes can be filed at any point in the resident's life.
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  • What are some examples of direct tax?

    Q: What are some examples of direct tax?

    A: Some examples of direct taxes include income taxes, taxes on assets and real property and personal property taxes. These are taxes that a person must pay directly to the entity collecting the tax. The taxpayer is not able to shift the burden of these taxes onto another individual or group.
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  • Which states have the lowest income taxes?

    Q: Which states have the lowest income taxes?

    A: Almost all Americans are required to pay state income tax in addition to the federal income tax. These tax rates may change from year to year, with some states raising or lowering their tax rates. In 2014, some states, such as Texas and Alaska, required no state income tax.
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  • What is the percentage taken out for taxes on a paycheck?

    Q: What is the percentage taken out for taxes on a paycheck?

    A: Precise percentages vary based on state, but according to the Ventures Scholars Program, four primary taxes are withheld from paychecks: federal income tax, state income tax, social security tax and Medicare tax. According to The Law Dictionary, taxes are withheld on a sliding scale that extracts more income from higher-earning individuals, topping out at 39.6 percent in 2014.
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  • How much do you have to make to file a 1099?

    Q: How much do you have to make to file a 1099?

    A: As of 2014, if you earn $600 or more working as an independent contractor for one company, you need to file a 1099 form to the Internal Revenue Service. The company should send you a 1099-MISC form by January 31 of the following year.
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  • What is "intangible tax"?

    Q: What is "intangible tax"?

    A: An intangible tax is a tax assessed by federal and state governments on assets of intangible value, such as goodwill, the value of a worker’s experience and/or knowledge, trade and franchise names, non-competitive agreements related to business mergers and acquisitions, trademarks and a company’s human capital. The Internal Revenue Service defines intangible assets as types of property that possess value but cannot be touched or seen.
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  • Why are Swiss bank accounts so special?

    Q: Why are Swiss bank accounts so special?

    A: Switzerland's strict privacy laws make it difficult to see who holds an account there, making Swiss bank accounts ideal for those who are trying to hide money. In other words, Switzerland makes an excellent tax shelter for those who want to keep their money in a bank but don't want to pay taxes for it.
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  • Are property taxes deductible?

    Q: Are property taxes deductible?

    A: Typical real estate property taxes are deductible, as of 2014. Amounts paid for local and state property taxes can be included on itemized federal tax returns. The deduction is for the actual payment to the taxing authority, not the amounts paid in to escrow.
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  • What is fat tax?

    Q: What is fat tax?

    A: As of 2014, a fat tax is a proposed tax on unhealthy foods to discourage consumers from buying them. This tax, also known as the Twinkie tax, was largely developed by Kelly Brownell, a psychology professor at Yale University, who discussed the idea in the New York Times in 1994.
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  • How did Chuck Berry get into tax trouble?

    Q: How did Chuck Berry get into tax trouble?

    A: Rock and roll pioneer Chuck Berry served 120 days in prison during the late 1970s as a result of tax evasion chargers. This sentence also included a requirement that Berry complete 1,000 hours of community service, which he apparently took care of by performing concerts.
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  • Can you deduct healthcare costs from your taxes?

    Q: Can you deduct healthcare costs from your taxes?

    A: While there are some ways to deduct medical expenses from federal taxes, the rules for who and what qualifies for these deductions are strict and may be a bit confusing to some taxpayers. For example, there is a rule stating that taxpayers and the spouses of taxpayers who are 65 years and older may deduct medical expenses that are more than 7.5 percent of the taxpayer's gross income so long as those expenses were not reimbursed. This rule only applies during the period of Jan. 1, 2013 through Dec. 31, 2016, further narrowing the field of which senior citizen taxpayers qualify to claim medical expenses on a tax return.
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  • How did Willie Nelson get into tax trouble?

    Q: How did Willie Nelson get into tax trouble?

    A: American country music legend Willie Nelson got into trouble with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) when he used an illegal tax shelter in the early 1980s to avoid paying federal income tax - to the tune of $16.7 million. In 1990, federal authorities raided his property and seized his assets, including his Texas ranch. They didn't make off with Nelson's favorite guitar, Trigger, which he made sure to keep safe.
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  • What are the characteristics of a good tax system?

    Q: What are the characteristics of a good tax system?

    A: The strongest tax systems create fairness, assure adequacy, simplicity, transparency and promote administrative ease according to the Oklahoma Policy Institute. Ultimately, strong and healthy tax systems create healthy and vibrant economies, and may even promote peace and create strong and stable governments.
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  • What is a 501(c)3?

    Q: What is a 501(c)3?

    A: The term "501(c)3" refers to the most common type of nonprofit organization recognized by the IRS. According to About.com, this category embraces such diverse entities as old-age homes, charity hospitals, schools, churches and the Red Cross, among others. These organizations are exempt from taxation, and donations to them are generally tax deductible.
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  • How can you tell if the IRS received your tax return?

    Q: How can you tell if the IRS received your tax return?

    A: One simple way to see if the IRS has received your tax return, especially if you are anticipating a refund, is to use the IRS's special "Where's My Refund" tool. The IRS updates refund statuses every 24 hours.
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  • What can I write off on my taxes as an independent contractor?

    Q: What can I write off on my taxes as an independent contractor?

    A: TurboTax reports that independent contractors can deduct half of the self-employment tax, health insurance premiums, office expenses, retirement plan contributions and business travel expenses. Independent contractors can also deduct the mileage accumulated on a personal vehicle when driving for business-related purposes. About.com notes that business equipment, employee benefits and wages, advertising costs, professional dues, professional services and repair costs can also be tax deductions for independent contractors.
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