Tax Guide

IRS offers tips on whether to itemize deductions

Posted January 29, 2011 9:07 p.m. EST
Updated February 8, 2011 9:29 p.m. EST

— When filing taxes, it's important to determine whether to use the standard deduction or to itemize specific deductions. The Internal Revenue Service offered some tips to help taxpayers decide.

It might be best to itemize if the taxpayer:

– cannot use the standard deduction 

– had large uninsured medical or dental expenses

– paid interest or taxes on a home

– incurred business expenses not reimbursed by the company

– had large uninsured casualty or theft losses

– made large charitable contributions

Married people who file separate returns cannot use the standard deduction if one spouse itemizes deductions. Non-resident aliens and dual-status aliens cannot use the standard deduction, not can people filing a tax return for a period of less than 12 months.