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Federal Tax Deductions for Parents, Work, Home, School, and Travel

Time to save on your taxes

What Is a Tax Deduction?

A tax deduction reduces your taxable income. Your total deductions are subtracted from your taxable income in order to determine your total tax bill for the year.

Tax credits are similar to tax deductions, but they reduce your tax bill dollar for dollar. This page lists tax deductions as well as related tax credits.

How Do I Qualify to Claim Tax Deductions?

In order to claim most tax deductions for the current Tax Year, the payments have to occur during the Tax Year or no later than December 31. 

What Are the Different Types of Tax Deductions?

Review these tax deductions based on life-changing events and other life situations: 

NOTE: There are specific nondeductible expenses that cannot be claimed on tax returns, such as home repairs and political contributions.

What Are Tax Deductions for Life-Changing Events?


Parent Deduction What Are Tax Deductions for Parents and Families?

You can claim exemptions (similar to tax deductions) for qualified dependents. There are also tax credits for child care expenses and adoption expenses.


Home, Mortgage Deduction What Are Tax Deductions for Homeowners?

Homeowners can take advantage of deductions for mortgage interest, real estate taxes, installing energy-efficient home improvements, canceled debt on a mortgage, having a home office, and more.


Employee, Worker Deduction What Are Tax Deductions for Working?

There are various tax deductions available for employees and the self-employed. There are also deductions to help you find employment. If you contribute to a retirement plan, you may be able to take a deduction or claim a tax credit.


Medical, Health Deduction What Are Tax Deductions for Medical Expenses?

If you have medical expenses, such as health insurance premiums, which total more than 7.5% of your income, you may be able to deduct them. There are also deductions for contributions to health savings accounts.


Student, Educational Deduction What Are Tax Deductions for Education?

There is a deduction for paying student loans. For teachers, there is a deduction for educator expenses. There are also two different tax credits (American Opportunity Credit and Lifetime Learning Credit) available for students.


Miscellaneous, Other Deduction What Are Tax Deductions for Charity?

You can deduct many charitable contributions and donations. You can also take a deduction for using your vehicle for charity.


Seasonal Tax Deduction What is the Standard Deduction and What Are Itemized Deductions?

When you file a tax return, you will either take the standard deduction for your filing status, or you will itemize deductions. Find out which is best for you.


Green Energy Deduction What Are Tax Deductions for Car and Travel?

You can claim tax deductions for using your car for the purposes of business purposes, medical purposes, or for charity. There are deductions for travelling out of town for your job. Also, there is a tax credit for buying an electric car.


Retirement, Retirement Savings Deduction What Are Miscellaneous or Other Tax Deductions?

There are a number of other tax deductions and credits that don't fit neatly into any of the above categories, such as for gambling losses, investment expenses, foreign taxes, tax preparation fees, and more. There are even some strange, unusual tax breaks that have been successfully used in the past.

Where Can I Find More Information on Tax Breaks and Savings?