You know all those tax breaks that were scheduled to expire at the end of 2014? More than 50 of them didn’t expire after all but were extended at the last minute by Congress and the president with the Tax Increase Prevention Act, which was signed Dec. 19, 2014.
That’s good news for people who have private mortgage insurance, suffered a foreclosure or short sale or live in a state with no INCOME TAX. Teachers and college students also benefited, as did homeowners who made energy-saving improvements.
The 50-plus tax breaks, which applied to both businesses and individuals, now will mostly expire at the end of 2015 – unless they’re extended again. Yes, this happened last year, too.
“It seems like each year [Congress is] waiting longer and longer to sign the bill,” says Jessie Seaman, senior associate attorney at the Tax Defense Network in Jacksonville, Florida. “I have a feeling it will be the same way in 2015.”
In recent years, the tax breaks have been extended piecemeal – one or two years at a time – because many members of Congress say they want to revamp the tax code. So far, that hasn’t happened. But by extending the tax breaks for a year at a time, Congress leaves its options open.
Will the tax breaks be extended at the end of 2015? It’s really anybody’s guess.
“That would require a lot more than a crystal ball,” says Bob Meighan, vice president of TURBOTAXin San Diego. “It would require tremendous insight into the incoming Congress.”
The tax breaks include regular deductions, which require you to itemize to deduct the amount from your adjusted gross income, “above the line” deductions, available even to those who don’t itemize, and tax credits, which are deducted from your tax liability.
Here are seven freshly extended tax breaks that will save individual taxpayers money