Monday, March 22, 2010

Tax Returns Are Up 10% - Find Out If You Qualify for Recovery Act Tax Credits

Tax Returns Are Up 10% - Find Out If You Qualify for Recovery Act Tax Credits
Posted by Macon Phillips on March 22, 2010 at 01:09 PM EDT
Thanks in large part to tax benefits in the Recovery Act, taxpayers are seeing larger refunds from their 2009 tax returns this season -- according to the IRS, average tax returns are up by almost 10 percent this year.

While these tax return averages are interesting ... the question you're probably asking is "Do I qualify for any of those benefits?" To help you get answers, we've launched an interactive Tax Savings Tool to help you understand which Recovery Act tax benefits you should include in your filing.

Check it out:

This morning, the Vice President talked about the benefits for taxpayers on the Today Show (video):

The big guys know all the credits and deductions to claim during tax season, but we want middle class families to know just how much is out there for them this year thanks to the Recovery Act – and how to take advantage of it. From help with college expenses to credits for cost-saving, energy-efficiency home improvements, these Recovery Act tax credits not only provide some needed relief for working Americans, but also help them invest in their families’ futures.

Here is a quick run-down of some key tax benefits available thanks to the Recovery Act:

•Making Work Pay: 95 percent of working families are receiving the Work Pay tax credit of $400 for an individual or $800 for married couples filing jointly in their paychecks in 2009.
•College Expenses: Families and students are eligible for up to $2500 in tax savings under the American Opportunity Credit.
•Purchase of First Home: Homebuyers can get a credit of up to $8000 for first homes purchased by April 30, 2010 under the First Time homebuyer tax credit.
•Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Incentives: Taxpayers are eligible for up to $1500 in tax credits for making some energy-efficiency improvements to their homes.
•New Vehicle Purchases: Taxpayers can deduct state and local sales taxes or fees for vehicle purchases under the vehicle sales tax deduction.
•Expanded Family Credits: Moderate income families with children may be eligible for an increase under the Earned Income Tax Credit and the additional Child Tax Credit.
•Unemployment Benefits Tax Free in 2009: the Recovery Act made the first $2400 of unemployment benefits received in 2009 tax free.
The Recovery Act’s tax benefits of nearly $300 billion are not only providing some relief for middle class families, but also helping to jumpstart the economy and create more clean-energy, manufacturing, and construction jobs. To learn more, visit

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