Tips for Claiming a Casualty Loss Tax Deduction

November 02, 2017 : Samantha

The recent devastation due to the hurricanes in the southern states and wildfires in northern California   has left many reeling in the aftermath. From locating family members to beginning to repair the damage, the last thing you want to think about is your taxes. However, you may be eligible to claim a casualty loss tax deduction and relieve some of the financial burden associated with a disaster.

Recently, new relief has been announced which may affect you as you work to identify your resources for recovering from the destruction. In this article, we’ll cover the potential tax relief available, how to find out if you’re eligible for disaster related casualty loss tax deductions and how H&R Block can help.

 

What tax relief is available to hurricane victims?

The IRS has recently announced a variety of tax relief efforts to help alleviate some of the stress due to the recent disasters. Some key highlights are:

  • Tax Filing Postponement Deadlines – certain 2016 tax filing deadlines for those who reside in the disaster area may be postponed without penalty
  • Retirement funds access – eligible retirement plan participants may be able to access their 401k or IRA money penalty free with minimal red tape
  • EITC/ACTC…option to use 2016 income when filing for these tax credits on your 2017 tax return
  • Deducting casualty losses – certain disaster related casualty losses may be deductible
  • Tax document recovery – the IRS will waive the usual fees and expedite requests for copies of previously filed tax returns for those needing documentation to apply for benefits or file amended returns claiming casualty losses

 

How can I find out if I’m eligible for relief?

Eligibility is determined by many factors including the location of your residence, business or other property. If you reside or own property in a presidentially-designated disaster area or zone you may be eligible for additional benefits. The best way to determine your eligibility is to set an appointment with an H&R Block Disaster & Casualty Loss trained Tax Professional by calling 1-800-HRBlock.

 

Now Available – Free Disaster & Casualty Loss Advisory Service at H&R Block

Navigating the documentation and the tax relief available to you can be overwhelming. H&R Block is here to help. Now, you can consult with a specially trained tax expert in Disaster & Casualty loss free of charge at an H&R Block near you. We’re happy to provide this free, comprehensive tax advice to help you navigate the tax relief benefits you may be eligible for, as well as other important tax filing considerations.

We know nothing can replace the loss you’ve experienced. We’re here to help you get the information you need and questions answered, so you can focus on rebuilding your future.

To make an appointment, call 1-800-HRBlock.

 

Disclaimer: Individual filers only. Assistance filing tax returns or amending prior year returns will incur normal tax preparation fees.

Related Topics

Related Resources

Can I Claim Medical Expenses on My Taxes? What Can I Claim?

If you’re itemizing deductions, the IRS generally allows you a medical expenses deduction if you have unreimbursed expenses that are more than 7.5% of your adjusted gross income for tax years 2017 or 2018. You can deduct the cost of care from several types of practitioners at various stages of care.

Tax Reform and Expats – A Brief Look Ahead

Expats are subject to recent changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act much like any other taxpayer. Read on to learn more about how to prepare in the Tax Information Center.

Is TurboTax Live the Best Virtual Tax Prep Option?

Looking for virtual tax help with your online filing? Learn more about your options by comparing TurboTax Live to H&R Block Tax Pro Review and Tax Pro Go.

Is Your Engagement Ring Purchase Tax Deductible?

Unfortunately, the cost of your engagement ring can't be deducted as a write-off on your personal income taxes. H&R Block tax pros explain why.

Samantha