Some choose to itemize deductions if their allowable itemized deduction amounts to more than the standard deduction. Others do so because they are not qualified for standard deduction.
Standard deductions do not apply to the following:
- Non-resident aliens
- Dual-status citizens
- Taxpayers who file returns for a period of less than 12 months
For couples who file separate returns, they should either both use itemized deduction, or both use the standard deduction. Read IRS Publication 501, for more details on Exemptions, Standard Deduction, and Filing Information.
What Are Itemized Deductions?
Itemized deductions are tax deductions derived from certain expenses. They are categorized as:
- Medical and dental expenses
- Job expenses
- State and local income taxes, or sales tax
- Home mortgage and investment interest
- Real estate and personal property taxes
- Charitable contributions
- Casualty and theft losses
- Miscellaneous deductions
Limitations on Itemized Deductions
Visit the IRS website for more information:
IRS Form 1040, Schedule A and B (PDF)
IRS Publication 17, Your Federal Income Tax