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Gold Conversationalist
Posts: 69
Registered: ‎06-08-2013

Re: Should my mother file a tax return?

Message 1 of 10 (1,321 Views)

Excellent point . . . would not have thought of that myself. I won't have that issue because I will always have income coming in outside of SS.  But my mother who is 97 and is now on Medicaid hasn't filed a return since the 1960's.  Risk?

Info Seeker
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎05-05-2012

Re: Should my mother file a tax return?

Message 2 of 10 (1,417 Views)

I am an AARP TaxAide in Minnesota. The procedure in our MN district is to ALWAYS file a Federal return for the person even if the there is no taxable income.  The reason is Identity Theft Prevention – file the return so that someone cannot file a fraudulent return using that SSN.  If the AGI is zero, we add in $1 on line 21 of the 1040, with the description “ID Theft Prevention”

Info Seeker
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎11-17-2011

Re: Should my mother file a tax return?

Message 3 of 10 (1,689 Views)

Yes, though necessarily  taxable it is a reportable event. Also State might have a tax on it.

Gold Conversationalist
Posts: 69
Registered: ‎06-08-2013

Re: Should my mother file a tax return?

Message 4 of 10 (1,753 Views)

I believe there are a couple things here that must be considered.  Some states tax Social Security; you would have to check the limits as established by the State.  In NY, SS is not taxed.  If you've had taxes taken out of salary or your 401K etc. (my investment firms have required tax withdrawals of 10% and 20% depending on size of RMD or other type of withdrawal) and want it back, then yes, you need to file a return.  Also with regard to Federal, it depends on your gross income and this includes money that comes from IRAs and 401Ks that were tax deferred. 

 

IF your filing status is . . .

AND at the end of 2016

you were* . . .

THEN file a return if your gross

income** was at least . . .

Single(see the instructions for line 1)

under 65

65 or older

$10,350

11,900

Married filing jointly***(see the instructions for line 2)

under 65 (both spouses)

65 or older (one spouse)

65 or older (both spouses)

$20,700

21,950

23,200

Married filing separately (see the instructions for line 3)

any age

$4,050

Head of household (see the instructions for line 4)

under 65

65 or older

$13,350

14,900

Qualifying widow(er) with dependent child (see the instructions for line 5)

under 65

65 or older

$16,650

17,900

 

As far as income from sale of a home, one can be exempt up to $250,000 ($500,000 in some cases), but if one has already received exemption from the sale of a previous home, they are not eligible for another.

Bronze Conversationalist
Posts: 16
Registered: ‎07-17-2011

Re: Should my mother file a tax return?

Message 5 of 10 (1,803 Views)

Depending on your state, check on the requirements to file state returns, too.  Some things that may be excludable from federal returns in not always excluded on state returns.

Info Seeker
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎03-15-2011

Re: Should my mother file a tax return?

Message 6 of 10 (2,082 Views)

My AARP tax preparer at the Senior Center in Alabama told my husband and me that we did not have to file returns for 2017 and beyond.  Hope he is right.

Info Seeker
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎08-23-2010

Re: Should my mother file a tax return?

Message 7 of 10 (3,658 Views)

My lady friend survives only on social security and one of the free tax preparers told her not to bother however to qualify for some of the available benefits she qualifies for proof of income is a requirement and tax form information can be helpful

Trusted Social Butterfly
Posts: 7,020
Registered: ‎02-14-2008

Re: Should my mother file a tax return?

Message 8 of 10 (4,249 Views)

I'm seconding Gails complete answer. Actually, I asked DW who is an AARP Tax Aide and she concurs you must go through the motions and file.

   Consider looking for an AARP Tax Aide service, if available in your area, so you don't have to pay for the service.  


“The world is a book. Those who do not travel read only one page.”
Valued Social Butterfly
Posts: 8,457
Registered: ‎08-18-2008

Re: Should my mother file a tax return?

Message 9 of 10 (4,261 Views)

Direct from the IRS -

IRS - Tax Topics - Topic 701 - Sale of Your Home

 

Note it says this:  " Reporting the Sale

If you receive an informational income-reporting document such as Form 1099-S (PDF), Proceeds From Real Estate Transactions, you must report the sale of the home even if the gain from the sale is excludable."

 

If she sold her home in the traditional manner, she will most likely to receive a 1099-S.

 

IRS Publication 523 can give you more info - 

 

 

Info Seeker
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎03-13-2017

Should my mother file a tax return?

Message 10 of 10 (4,268 Views)

Due to income, my mother has not had to file a federal tax return for 7 years.  Her home sold in 2016.  I realize the income from the sale is not taxable, but should I go throiugh the motions of filing a return anyway?