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Member
Miss_B
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎01-21-2014

Need help with donations

I went to Goodwill a few times last year to drop off some bags of clothes, boxes of books, shoes, housewares. I think my donations maybe totaled $60.00 or so if I had to add them up. So I entered in these in the area of donations. Then I clicked next and got this response:
 
"Your Deduction Results
 
 
You’re getting the: Standard deduction of $6,100We chose this option for you since it will save you more money on your federal return than claiming itemized deductions."
 
Or it gives me the option of taking a smaller claim of $1200 something. I don't understand. Why can't I just claim my $60 worth of donations?
 
Please help, I'm confused.
 
Miss B-
Alumni Associate
WillMc1
Posts: 1,041
Registered: ‎12-13-2013

Re: Need help with donations

Hello Miss_B, and welcome to The Community.

When preparing a tax return, you are allowed to make the choice to either use the standard deduction allowed for your filing status (single I am assuming in your case), or you can itemize deductions if it benefits you because allowable deductions would be higher number than the standard deduction ($6100) is. The big rule here is you can't do both as it would create a double benefit.

Normally a fair indication for considering itemized deductions would be if you are buying a home and pay a lot of mortgage interest, property taxes, state/local income taxes, substantial charitable contributions, medical/dental payments (limited), gambling losses to the extent of gambling winnings, etc. From the sound of your question, I am assuming you most likely don't fit into this category, so the standard deduction is the most advantageous choice for you.

I hope this helps. Good luck to you.
WillMc1
Tax Professional (Retired)
Member
Miss_B
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎01-21-2014

Re: Need help with donations

Correct, I am filing single. So I have a total donation amount of $60 for 2013. I dont have reciepts for anything over that. I'm afraid I cant use the standard deduction amount because it's too high. I'm afriad it will end up affecting me negatively.

 

Should I just not even bother putting my Goodwill donation on there at all, as it's so little?

 

Also, I signed up for the ACA health insurance for CA. It's supposed to start as of  Jan 15 2014, but I signed up in December 2013, do I have to include it as well?

Alumni Associate
WillMc1
Posts: 1,041
Registered: ‎12-13-2013

Re: Need help with donations

Hi again,

I think you misunderstood, or maybe I didn't explain it well, but you are automatically allowed to claim the standard deduction of $6100. My point I tried to make was that if you can't itemize deductions totaling more than that, then opt to claim the standard deduction.

Regarding the Premium Tax Credit under the Affordable Care Act, if eligible you can either claim the credit in advance (if eligible) on your 2013 return to help pay for your health insurance premiums, or you can wait and claim the credit next year on your 2014 return. Here is a link to an IRS information page that explains this and more:

http://www.irs.gov/uac/The-Premium-Tax-Credit

Let us know if you have any further questions.
WillMc1
Tax Professional (Retired)