Although most people think of tax time as stressful, you can reduce some of the sting with proper planning. Using the VA disability tax credits along with others that you qualify for will allow you to have the most favorable return possible.
Instead of waiting until April 15 rolls around, start looking into your options now. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain!
One option to make sure that you get the best results possible is to use professional services. If you do not feel comfortable filling out your own tax forms, obtain some help. You might be able to get free assistance due to your status.
While veterans receiving disability will qualify for some of these tax credits, they are not the only ones. If you are the spouse or child of a qualifying veteran, you can likely use the same VA disability tax credits. Also, parents of veterans are able to obtain certain credits in relation to their familial status. To qualify, the veteran must have left the military in good standing.
Dishonorably discharged vets and their families do not qualify. The service member must have served 24 consecutive months active duty. Members and families of the following qualify:
- Air Force
- Coast Guard
Commissioned officers of:
- Public Health Service
- Environmental Protection Agency
- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
You should never assume that you qualify for a particular credit. Always double check the requirements for any benefit prior to making the claim.
As a general matter, you should keep all of your relevant paperwork in good order. A small filing cabinet that contains your service records, recent tax returns and other relevant financial data should contain everything you need come tax time.
When you are considering which benefits you might qualify for, don’t forget about the ones directed towards civilians. Although you may be accustomed to thinking in terms of military regulations always being different, in this instance you can look for both. There are all types of things that you can write off of your taxes.
As you are looking at your disability, your pension and compensation are both eligible for tax benefit claims. Likewise, you can look at your educational expenses and work therapy. Depending on where you live, you might also need to file a state income tax claim. If so, there are likely benefits that you can take advantage of there as well. Have your tax advisor assist with these forms when you do your federal income tax return.
Each year, the IRS has new guidelines and regulations in place regarding many things, including the possibility of disability tax credits. This is why you need to be sure that you are using the most current information when making your financial choices.
A part of being responsible is taking care of your federal and state tax obligations. Obtain aid if needed and make sure to use all of the credits that you qualify for!