Avoid scam artists by following these tips:
To help disaster victims, donate to recognized charities.
Be wary of charities with names that are similar to familiar or nationally known organizations. Some phony charities use names or websites that sound or look like those of respected, legitimate organizations. The IRS website at IRS.gov has a search feature, Exempt Organizations Select Check, through which people may find legitimate, qualified charities; donations to these charities may be tax-deductible. Legitimate charities may also be found on the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) website at fema.gov.
Don’t give out personal financial information — such as Social Security numbers or credit card and bank account numbers and passwords — to anyone who solicits a contribution from you. Scam artists may use this information to steal your identity and money.
Don’t give or send cash. For security and tax record purposes, contribute by check or credit card or another way that provides documentation of the gift.
If you plan to make a contribution for which you would like to claim a deduction, see IRS Publication 526, Charitable Contributions, to read about the kinds of organizations that can receive deductible contributions.
For more on tax scams and schemes go to IRS.gov.
To deduct moving expenses, the following should apply:
1. Your move closely relates to the start of work.
2. You meet the distance test.
3. You meet the time test.
If you qualify, you can generally claim deductions such as:
Utilities and other qualified moving expenses
Publication 521 has details on how to deduct moving expenses on your tax return.
Tax forms to file:
To figure the amount of your deduction, use Form 3903, Moving Expenses.
To change your address, use Form 8822, Change of Address.
To help taxpayers plan their holiday-season and year-end giving, the IRS offers the following additional reminders:
• Contributions are deductible in the year made.
• Check that the organization is qualified using the IRS Exempt Organizations Select Check tool.
• For individuals, only taxpayers who itemize their deductions on Form 1040 Schedule A can claim deductions for charitable contributions.
• For all donations of property, including clothing and household items, get from the charity, if possible, a receipt that includes the name of the charity, date of the contribution, and a reasonably-detailed description of the donated property.
• If the amount of a taxpayer’s deduction for all noncash contributions is over $500, a properly-completed Form 8283 must be submitted with the tax return.
• And, as always it’s important to keep good records and receipts.
IRS.gov has additional information on charitable giving including:
• Charities & Non-Profits
• Publication 526, Charitable Contributions
• Online mini-course, Can I Deduct My Charitable Contributions?
• IRS Exempt Select Check Tool YouTube Video