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Chapter 3. Computing The Tax. 1. The Big Picture (slide 1 of 2). Polly maintains a household in which she lives with her Unemployed husband (Nick), Stepdaughter (Paige), and A family friend (Maude). She provides more > ½ the support of both Paige and Maude.

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chapter 3

Chapter 3

Computing The Tax

1

the big picture slide 1 of 2
The Big Picture (slide 1 of 2)

Polly maintains a household in which she lives with her

Unemployed husband (Nick),

Stepdaughter (Paige), and

A family friend (Maude).

She provides more > ½ the support of both Paige and Maude.

Maude was fatally injured in an automobile accident in February

Polly paid for her hospitalization and funeral expenses.

Paige, an accomplished gymnast, graduated from high school last year.

Paige has a part-time job but spends most of her time training and looking for an athletic scholarship to the ‘‘right’’ college.

2

the big picture slide 2 of 2
The Big Picture (slide 2 of 2)

In March, Nick left for parts unknown and has not been seen or heard from since.

Polly sold her wedding rings to a cousin who was getting married.

The rings cost $15,000.

The rings were sold for their approximate value of $8,000.

Based on these facts, what are Polly’s income tax concerns for the current year?

Read the chapter and formulate your response.

3

tax formula
Tax Formula

FIGURE 3.1

income broadly conceived
Income -Broadly Conceived
  • Includes all the taxpayer’s income, both taxable and nontaxable
    • Essentially equivalent to gross receipts
      • It does not include a return of capital or receipt of borrowed funds
partial list of exclusions from gross income
Accident insurance proceeds

Annuities (cost element)

Bequests

Child support payments

Cost-of-living allowance (for military)

Damages for personal injury or sickness

Gifts received

Group term life insurance, premium paid by employer (for coverage up to $50,000)

Inheritances

Interest from state and local (i.e., municipal) bonds

Life insurance paid on death

Meals and lodging (if furnished for employer’s convenience)

Military allowances

Minister’s dwelling rental value allowance

Railroad retirement benefits (to a limited extent)

Scholarship grants (to a limited extent)

Social Security benefits (to a limited extent)

Unemployment compensation (to a limited extent)

Veterans’ benefits

Welfare payments

Workers’ compensation benefits

Partial List of Exclusions from Gross Income

Exhibit 3-1

gross income
Gross Income
  • The Internal Revenue Code defines gross income broadly as ‘‘except as otherwise provided . . . , all income from whatever source derived’’
  • Gross income does not include unrealized gains
partial list of gross income items slide 1 of 2
Alimony

Annuities (income element)

Awards

Back pay

Bargain purchase from employer

Bonuses

Breach of contract damages

Business income

Clergy fees

Commissions

Compensation for services

Death benefits

Debts forgiven

Director’s fees

Dividends

Embezzled funds

Employee awards (in certain cases)

Employee benefits (except certain fringe benefits)

Estate and trust income

Farm income

Fees

Gains from illegal activities

Gains from sale of property

Gambling winnings

Group term life insurance, premium paid by employer (for coverage over $50,000)

Partial List of Gross Income Items (slide 1 of 2)

Exhibit 3.2

partial list of gross income items slide 2 of 2
Hobby income

Interest

Jury duty fees

Living quarters, meals (unless furnished for employer’s convenience)

Mileage allowance

Military pay (unless combat pay)

Notary fees

Partnership income

Pensions

Prizes

Professional fees

Punitive damages

Rents

Rewards

Royalties

Salaries

Severance pay

Strike and lockout benefits

Supplemental unemployment benefits

Tips and gratuities

Travel allowance (in certain cases)

Treasure trove (found property)

Wages

Partial List of Gross Income Items (slide 2 of 2)

Exhibit 3.2

deductions individual taxpayers
Deductions - Individual Taxpayers
  • Individual taxpayers have two categories of deductions:
    • Deductions for adjusted gross income (AGI)
    • Deductions from adjusted gross income
deductions for agi slide 1 of 2
Deductions For AGI (slide 1 of 2)
  • Sometimes known as above-the-line deductions
    • On the tax return, they are taken before the ‘‘line’’ designating AGI
deductions for agi slide 2 of 2
Deductions For AGI (slide 2 of 2)
  • Deductions for AGI include:
    • Ordinary and necessary expenses incurred in a trade or business
    • One-half of self-employment tax paid
    • Alimony paid
    • Certain payments to an IRA and Health Savings Accounts
    • Unreimbursed moving expenses
    • Fees for college tuition and related expenses
    • Interest on student loans
    • The capital loss deduction, and
    • Others
adjusted gross income agi
Adjusted Gross Income (AGI)
  • AGI is an important subtotal
    • Serves as the basis for computing percentage limitations on certain itemized deductions such as
      • Medical expenses
      • Charitable contributions
      • Certain casualty losses
    • e.g., Medical expenses are deductible only to the extent they exceed 7.5% of AGI
      • This limitation might be described as a 7.5% “floor” under the medical expense deduction
deductions from agi slide 1 of 3
Deductions From AGI (slide 1 of 3)
  • Deductions from AGI include:
    • The greater of:
      • Itemized deductions, or
      • The standard deduction
    • Personal and dependency exemptions
deductions from agi slide 2 of 3
Deductions From AGI (slide 2 of 3)
  • A partial list of itemized deductions includes:
    • Medical expenses (in excess of 7.5% of AGI)
    • Certain taxes and interest
    • Charitable contributions
    • Casualty Losses (in excess of 10% of AGI)
    • Deductions for expenses related to
      • The production or collection of income, and
      • The management of property held for the production of income
    • Certain miscellaneous itemized deductions (in excess of 2% of AGI)
deductions from agi slide 3 of 3
Deductions From AGI (slide 3 of 3)
  • The standard deduction is the sum of two components:
    • Basic standard deduction
      • Amount allowed is based on taxpayer’s filing status
    • Additional standard deductions
      • Available for taxpayers who are
        • Age 65 or over, and/or
        • Blind
      • Two additional standard deductions are allowed for a taxpayer who is age 65 or over and blind
      • Amount allowed depends on filing status
standard deduction slide 1 of 2
Standard Deduction (slide 1 of 2)
  • The basic standard deduction (BSD) amount depends on filing status of taxpayer

Filing status 2010 2011

Single $5,700 $5,800

MFJ, SS 11,400 11,600

HH 8,400 8,500

MFS 5,700 5,800

TABLE 3.1

standard deduction slide 2 of 2
Standard Deduction (slide 2 of 2)
  • Additional standard deduction (ASD)
    • For taxpayers age 65 or older and/or legally blind

Filing Status 2010 2011

Single $1,400 $1,450

MFJ, SS 1,100 1,150

HH 1,400 1,450

MFS 1,100 1,150

TABLE 3.2

determining standard deduction
Determining Standard Deduction
  • Examples (2011 tax year):
    • Taxpayer is single, blind, and age 65 or older
      • SD = $5,800 (BSD) + $1,450 (ASD) + $1,450 (ASD) = $8,700
    • Taxpayers are married, filing jointly, one blind, and both age 65 or older
      • SD = $11,600 (BSD) + $1,150 (ASD) + $1,150 (ASD) + $1,150 (ASD) = $15,050
taxpayers ineligible for standard deduction
Taxpayers Ineligible For Standard Deduction
  • Certain taxpayers cannot use the SD:
    • Married, filing separately, when either spouse itemizes deductions
    • Nonresident aliens
    • Individual filing return for tax year of less than 12 months because of change in annual accounting period
sd limit for person claimed as dependent
SD Limit For Person Claimed as Dependent
  • Individual claimed as dependent has a BSD in 2011 limited to the greater of:
    • $950 or
    • $300 plus earned income (but not exceeding normal BSD)
  • ASD amount(s) still available
examples of sd limit slide 1 of 2
Examples of SD Limit (slide 1 of 2)
  • Dependent’s SD (2011 tax year):
    • A blind child who earns $200 and is claimed by parents as a dependency exemption
      • SD = $950 (BSD) + $1,450 (ASD) = $2,400
    • A child who earns $1,500 and is claimed by parents as a dependency exemption
      • SD = $1,800 [BSD equal to greater of $950 or ($300 + $1,500 earned income)]
examples of sd limit slide 2 of 2
Examples of SD Limit (slide 2 of 2)
  • Examples of dependent’s SD (2011 tax year)
    • A child who earns $6,000 and is claimed by parents as a dependency exemption
      • SD = $5,800 [BSD limited to normal amount]
personal and dependency exemption amounts
Personal and DependencyExemption Amounts
  • Amounts
    • 2010: $3,650 per exemption
    • 2011: $3,700 per exemption
  • Personal and dependency exemptions
    • One per taxpayer (two personal exemptions when married, filing jointly) and for each dependent
      • Exception: Individual claimed as dependent by another taxpayer does not receive a personal exemption
personal and dependency exemptions in year of death
Personal and Dependency Exemptions In Year Of Death
  • Personal exemption allowed on joint return for spouse who dies during the year
    • Example: Tom and Betty were married in 1990. Tom dies on February 1, 2011. A personal exemption may be claimed for Tom on the taxpayers’ 2011 joint return.
dependency exemptions slide 1 of 2
Dependency Exemptions (slide 1 of 2)
  • A dependency exemption is available for one who is either a qualifying child or a qualifying relative
    • A qualifying child must meet the following tests:
      • Relationship
      • Abode
      • Age, and
      • Support
dependency exemptions slide 2 of 2
Dependency Exemptions (slide 2 of 2)
  • Congress has tried to establish a uniform definition of qualifying child for purposes of the:
    • Dependency exemption
    • Head-of-household filing status
    • Earned income tax credit
    • Child tax credit
    • Credit for child and dependent care expenses
relationship test
Relationship Test
  • The child must be the taxpayer’s:
    • Son or daughter
    • Stepson or stepdaughter
    • Brother or sister
    • Stepbrother or stepsister
    • Half brother or half sister, or
    • A descendant of such individual (e.g., grandchildren, nephews, nieces)
  • A child who has been adopted, or whose adoption is pending, qualifies
  • A foster child may also qualify
abode test
Abode Test
  • A qualifying child must live with the taxpayer for more than half of the year
    • Temporary absences from the household due to special circumstances (e.g., illness, education) are not considered
age test
Age Test
  • The child must be under age 19 or under age 24 in the case of a student
    • A student is a child who, during any part of five months of the year, is enrolled full time at a school or government-sponsored on-farm training course
    • Individuals who are disabled are not subject to the age test
the big picture example 13 dependency exemptions
The Big Picture - Example 13Dependency Exemptions

Return to the facts of The Big Picture on p. 3-2.

Does Paige meet the requirements of a qualifying child so Polly can claim a dependency exemption for her?

Paige satisfies the relationship and abodetests, but the answer to the age test remains unclear.

Since she is not a full-time student or disabled, she must be under 19 to meet the age test.

Unfortunately, the facts given do not provide Paige’s precise age.

31

support
Support
  • To be a qualifying child, the individual must not be self-supporting
    • Cannot provide more than one-half of his or her own support
    • In the case of a full-time student, scholarships are not considered to be support
tiebreaker rules
Tiebreaker Rules
  • In situations where a child may be a qualifying child for more than one person
    • Tiebreaker rules specify which person has priority in claiming the dependency exemption

Table 3.3

qualifying relative
Qualifying Relative
  • In order to claim a dependency exemption for a qualifying relative, the following tests must be met:
    • Relationship
    • Gross income
    • Support
relationship test1
Relationship Test
  • The relationship test for a qualifying relative is more expansive than for a qualifying child. Also included are the following relatives:
    • Lineal ascendants (e.g., parents, grandparents)
    • Collateral ascendants (e.g., uncles, aunts)
    • Certain in-laws (e.g., son-, daughter-, father-, mother-, brother-, and sister-in-law)
  • The relationship test also includes unrelated parties who live with the taxpayer
the big picture example 19 dependency exemptions
The Big Picture - Example 19Dependency Exemptions

Return to the facts of The Big Picture on p. 3-2.

Is Maude a qualifying relative?

Although Maude is unrelated to Polly, she qualifies as Polly’s dependent by being a member of the household.

Since Maude is a dependent, Polly can also claim the medical expenses she paid on Maude’s behalf.

The funeral expenses are not deductible.

Although Maude lived for only two months, the full amount of the dependency exemption is allowed and does not have to be apportioned.

36

gross income test
Gross Income Test
  • Dependent’s gross income must be less than the exemption amount ($3,700 for 2011)
the big picture example 22 dependency exemptions
The Big Picture - Example 22Dependency Exemptions

Return to the facts of The Big Picture on p. 3-2.

Assuming that Paige is not a qualifying child, can she be a qualifying relative for dependency exemption purposes?

She meets the relationship and support tests, but what about the gross income test?

If her income from her part-time job is less than $3,700, she does qualify and can be claimed by Polly as a dependent.

38

support test
Support Test
  • Taxpayer must provide more than 50% of the qualifying relative’s support
    • Only amounts expended are considered in the support test
    • Scholarships are not considered in the support test
  • Two exceptions to the support test:
    • Multiple support agreements
    • Children of divorced parents
multiple support agreements
Multiple Support Agreements
  • Allows one member of a group providing > 50% of support to claim individual even though no one person provides > 50% support
    • Eligible parties must provide > 10% of support
    • Each eligible party must meet all other dependency requirements
  • Example - Allows children of elderly parent to claim exemption for parent when none individually meets the 50% support test
children of divorced parents
Children of Divorced Parents
  • Special rules apply if the parents meet the following conditions:
    • They would have been entitled to the dependency exemption had they been married and filed a joint return
    • They have custody (either jointly or singly) of the child for more than half of the year
  • Under the general rule, the parent having custody of the child for the greater part of the year (i.e., the custodial parent) is entitled to the dependency exemption
    • General rule does not apply if
      • A multiple support agreement is in effect
      • Custodial parent issues a waiver in favor of the noncustodial parent
other rules for dependency exemptions
Other Rules for Dependency Exemptions
  • In addition to fitting into either the qualifying child or the qualifying relative category, a dependent must also meet:
    • The joint return, and
    • The citizenship or residency tests
joint return test
Joint Return Test
  • Dependent cannot file a joint return with spouse unless:
    • Filing solely for refund of tax withheld
    • No tax liability exists for either spouse
    • Neither spouse required to file return
citizenship or residency test
Citizenship or Residency Test
  • Dependent must be a U.S. citizen or a resident of U.S., Canada, or Mexico for some part of the calendar year in which the taxpayer’s tax year begins
    • An exception provides that an adopted child need not be a citizen or resident of the U.S. (or a contiguous country) as long as his or her principal abode is with a U.S. citizen
child tax credit
Child Tax Credit
  • $1,000 tax credit is allowed for each dependent child under the age of 17
    • Qualifying child includes stepchildren and eligible foster children
filing requirements slide 1 of 2
Filing Requirements (slide 1 of 2)
  • General Rule: Tax return must be filed if gross income is ≥ the sum of the standard deduction and exemption amount
      • ASD for blind does not apply for this determination
    • Special rules apply for dependents and self-employed taxpayers
filing requirements slide 2 of 2
Filing Requirements (slide 2 of 2)
  • Tax return of an individual is due on or before the 15th day of the 4th month after taxpayer’s year end
    • Most individuals are calendar year taxpayers, thus, due date is April 15
  • May obtain a 6 month extension of time to file
    • Excuses a taxpayer from penalty for failure to file, not from penalty for failure to pay
      • If more tax is owed, extension request (Form 4868) should be accompanied by check for balance of tax due
filing status
Filing Status
  • There are 5 filing statuses
    • Single
    • Married, filing jointly
    • Surviving spouse (qualifying widow or widower)
    • Head of household
    • Married, filing separately
  • Filing status affects tax rate brackets, standard deduction, and other amounts
single filing status
Single Filing Status
  • Includes a taxpayer who is unmarried or separated from spouse by a divorce decree or separate maintenance agreement and does not qualify for another filing status
    • Marital status is determined as of the last day of the tax year
      • When a spouse dies during the year, marital status is determined as of the date of death
married filing jointly mfj filing status
Married Filing Jointly (MFJ) Filing Status
  • Married as of last day of taxable year, or
  • Spouse dies during taxable year
surviving spouse filing status
Surviving Spouse Filing Status
  • Same tax rate brackets as married, filing jointly
  • File as surviving spouse for 2 years after death of spouse if taxpayer maintains a home in which a dependent child lives
    • For the year of death, surviving spouse is treated as being married
      • Thus, a joint return can be filed if the deceased spouse’s executor agrees
married filing separately filing status
Married Filing Separately Filing Status
  • Married but not filing a return with spouse and not abandoned spouse
head of household hh filing status
Head of Household (HH) Filing Status
  • Must be unmarried as of end of year or an abandoned spouse
  • Must pay > half the cost of maintaining a household which is the principal home of a dependent for more than half of tax year
    • A dependent must satisfy either the qualifying child or the qualifying relative category
      • A qualifying relative must also meet the relationship test
the big picture example 31 head of household filing status
The Big Picture - Example 31 Head-of-Household Filing Status

Return to the facts of The Big Picture on p. 3-2.

Assuming that Polly can be treated as single (i.e., not married), can Maude qualify Polly for head-of-household filing status?

The answer is no.

Even though Maude can be claimed as Polly’s dependent, she does not meet the relationship test.

54

exception to the hh requirements
Exception to the HH Requirements
  • HH may be claimed if taxpayer maintains a separate home for his or her parents
    • At least one parent must qualify as a dependent
abandoned spouse
Abandoned Spouse
  • Allows married taxpayer to file as Head of Household if taxpayer:
    • Does not file a joint return
    • Paid > half the cost of maintaining a home
    • Spouse did not live in home during last 6 months of tax year
    • Home was principal residence of taxpayer’s child for > half of year
    • Can claim child as a dependent
the big picture example 35 abandoned spouse filing status
The Big Picture - Example 35 Abandoned Spouse Filing Status

Return to the facts of The Big Picture on p. 3-2.

Can Polly qualify as an abandoned spouse?

Yes, if she can claim Paige as a dependent—either as a qualifying child or as a qualifying relative.

If so, Polly can use head-of-household filing status.

If not, her filing status is married person filing separately.

57

taxes rates
Taxes Rates
  • Tax liability is computed using either the Tax Table method or the Tax Rate Schedule method
    • Most taxpayers must use the Tax Tables
    • Certain taxpayers may not use the Tax Table method including:
      • An individual who files a short period return
      • Individuals whose taxable income exceeds the maximum (ceiling) amount in the Tax Table
        • The 2010 Tax Table applies to taxable income below $100,000
      • An estate or trust
  • For 2011 and 2012 the tax rates are 10%, 15%, 25%, 28%, 33%, and 35%
kiddie tax slide 1 of 4
Kiddie Tax (slide 1 of 4)
  • Net unearned income (NUI) of child is taxed at parents’ rate
    • Child must be under age 19 at end of year (or under age 24 if a full-time student)
    • NUI generally equals unearned income less $1,900 (2011 tax year)
kiddie tax slide 2 of 4
Kiddie Tax (slide 2 of 4)
  • Unearned income includes:
    • Taxable interest
    • Dividends
    • Capital gains
    • Rents
    • Royalties
    • Pension and annuity income, and
    • Unearned income from trusts
kiddie tax slide 3 of 4
Kiddie Tax (slide 3 of 4)
  • Computing NUI for Kiddie Tax for 2011:
    • Unearned income
    • Less: $950
    • Less: The greater of:

i) $950, or

ii) Allowable itemized deductions connected with production of unearned income

    • Equals: net unearned income
kiddie tax slide 4 of 4
Kiddie Tax (slide 4 of 4)
  • Net unearned income taxed at parents’ rate
    • Remainder of taxable income taxed at child’s rate
  • Two options for computing the tax
    • A separate return may be filed for the child
      • The tax on net unearned income (referred to as the allocable parental tax) is computed as though the income had been included on the parents’ return
        • Form 8615 is used to compute the tax
    • The parents may elect to report child’s income on their own return
      • Certain requirements must be met
gains and losses from property transactions slide 1 of 3
Gains and Losses from Property Transactions (slide 1 of 3)
  • In order for gains (losses) to be recognized (included in gross income), they must be realized:
    • Realized gain (loss) = amount realized - adjusted basis
      • Amount realized = selling price - costs of disposition
      • Adjusted basis = cost + capital additions - cost recovery
gains and losses from property transactions slide 2 of 3
Gains and Losses from Property Transactions (slide 2 of 3)
  • All realized gains are recognized unless a specific tax provision provides otherwise (e.g., nontaxable exchanges)
  • Realized losses may or may not be recognized depending on the circumstances
    • Generally, losses on the sale or disposition of personal use property are not recognized
gains and losses from property transactions slide 3 of 3
Gains and Losses from Property Transactions (slide 3 of 3)
  • Once recognized gains or losses have been determined, they must be classified as ordinary or capital
    • Ordinary gains are fully taxable
    • Ordinary losses are fully deductible
  • Capital gains and losses are subject to special tax treatment
gains and losses from capital asset transactions slide 1 of 2
Gains and Losses from Capital Asset Transactions (slide 1 of 2)
  • Capital assets are defined as any property other than:
    • Inventory,
    • Accounts Receivable, and
    • Depreciable property or real property used in a business
  • Most personal use assets owned by individuals are capital assets
    • Losses on these assets are not deductible
gains and losses from capital asset transactions slide 2 of 2
Gains and Losses from Capital Asset Transactions (slide 2 of 2)
  • Gains and losses from capital asset transactions must be netted
    • Net gains and losses by holding period
    • If excess losses result, they are shifted to the category carrying the highest tax rate
max tax rates for net capital gains of individuals
Max Tax Rates for Net Capital Gains of Individuals

ClassificationMaximum Rate

Short-term gains (held ≤ one year) 35%

Long-term gains (held > one year)

  • Collectibles 28%
  • Certain depreciable property

used in a trade or business

(unrecaptured § 1250 gain) 25%

  • All other long-term capital gains 15%, 5%,

or 0%

treatment of capital losses
Treatment of Capital Losses
  • Net capital losses of individuals are deductible for AGI up to $3,000 yearly
    • Excess capital losses are carried over to the next tax year
    • When carried over, capital losses retain their classification as short- or long-term
the big picture example 48 treatment of net capital loss
The Big Picture - Example 48 Treatment Of Net Capital Loss

Return to the facts of The Big Picture on p. 3-2.

Polly’s sale of her wedding rings resulted in a realized capital loss of $7,000

[$8,000 (selling price) - $15,000(cost basis)].

Because they were personal use property, Polly cannot deduct the loss.

70

refocus on the big picture slide 1 of 4
Refocus On The Big Picture (slide 1 of 4)

Polly’s major concern is her filing status.

If she qualifies as an abandoned spouse, she is entitled to file as head of household.

If not, she is considered to be a married person filing separately.

In order to be an abandoned spouse, Polly must be able to claim Paige as a dependent.

71

refocus on the big picture slide 2 of 4
Refocus On The Big Picture (slide 2 of 4)

To be a dependent, Paige must meet the requirements of a qualifying child or a qualifying relative.

For qualifying child purposes, Paige must meet either

The age test (i.e., under age 19), or

The full-time student (under age 24) test.

Paige is not a full-time student - is she under age 19?

If so, she is a qualifying child.

If Paige is not a qualifying child, is she a qualifying relative?

Here, the answer depends on meeting the gross income test.

How much did Paige earn from her part-time job?

If her earnings are under $3,700, she satisfies the gross income test.

72

refocus on the big picture slide 3 of 4
Refocus On The Big Picture (slide 3 of 4)

If Paige can be claimed as a dependent, Polly is an abandoned spouse entitled to head-of-household filing status.

If not, she is a married person filing separately.

Maude can be claimed as Polly’s dependent because she is a member of the household.

It does not matter that she died in February

The dependency exemption amount need not be apportioned and is allowed in full.

Because Maude is her dependent, Polly can claim the medical expenses she paid on Maude’s behalf.

The funeral expenses, however, are not deductible.

73

refocus on the big picture slide 4 of 4
Refocus On The Big Picture (slide 4 of 4)

Does Maude qualify Polly for head-of-household filing status?

No—although she is a dependent, Maude does not meet the relationship test.

The sale of the wedding rings results in a capital loss of $7,000($8,000 – $15,000).

Because the loss is for personal use property, it cannot be claimed for tax purposes.

74

slide75

If you have any comments or suggestions concerning this PowerPoint Presentation for South-Western Federal Taxation, please contact:

  • Dr. Donald R. Trippeer, CPA
  • trippedr@oneonta.edu
  • SUNY Oneonta