Theft or casualty loss deductions

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Updated: 1/10/2008 8:29 am
If your property is destroyed, damaged, or stolen, you may be able to claim a theft or casualty loss deduction on your tax form. When filing for this type of deduction, accurate record-keeping is a must. For personal thefts, your records should include a police report that shows when the items were stolen and when you noticed they were taken. Both cases also require that you file an insurance claim and provide proof of ownership, value, and cost of the property. Keep in mind that losses are only deductible if you itemize and only to the extent that they exceed 10 percent of your adjusted gross income. In most cases, the first $100 in losses for each disaster or theft is also nondeductible. Hurricane victims should refer to IRS publication 4492 for specific details concerning casualty deductions. These tips are meant to provide general information on federal income taxes. For specific advice, please consult a tax advisor or call the toll-free number for federal tax information and assistance at 1-800-829-1040.

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