Wacky Tax Deductions

Journal of Accountancy, June 2009 | Go to article overview

Wacky Tax Deductions


Bankrate.com surveyed accountants nationwide for its fourth annual survey of their clients' craziest attempts to reduce their taxes. Here are some stones to share at your next party or around the office:

* An Arizona client sought a home office deduction for the toilet paper he bought for his house.

* A client going through a divorce brought in receipts for noncash charitable donations roughly equal to the dollar amount of her income. The Texas woman had taken her cheating husband's possessions and donated them all to Goodwill. She was told she could only deduct up to 50% of her AGI. The return did not get audited.

* An Ohio woman tried to deduct her tricked-out hot tub for medical reasons. A portion of it was deducted, but that did not include the in-tub stereo, underwater speakers and mood lighting.

* A Texas woman didn't like the mature trees in her yard so she dug them up and donated them to charity She had to get an appraiser to value the trees, but the IRS did accept the deduction.

* An 85-year-old Tucson, Ariz., woman deducted more than $8,000 for dance lessons after her doctor suggested it would be good for her arthritic hips. …

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