So, I was absorbed in my tax filing process using the TurboTax tax preparation software (no endorsement implied, it’s just what I use) when the words “Certified Medical Assistant Class” jumped off the computer screen at me. While I write about certified nursing assistant training regularly, I wasn’t expecting to see it in my tax software. But there it was. It was a question from another user asking the user support community if certified nursing assistant courses could be listed as deductions on her tax return. The support representative had responded with the relevant link to the IRS publication that covers this question. Sure enough, it revealed that the kind of studies you can engage at Allen School, from certified nurse assistant courses to medical assistant certification to medical billing and coding online, were all eligible deductions. Now, I am not a tax expert by any stretch of the imagination. And I don’t recommend taking these deductions without first making sure they are proper for you given your personal tax situation. But it does seem probable that you can take this deduction. Check with your tax preparer first or read the IRS information very carefully to make sure you qualify. Good luck getting your taxes done and may your refund check be a fat one!
So, the tax season is upon us. Time to dig out all your last year’s receipts, paycheck stubs, W-2s, 1099s and any other income and expense related materials. However you choose to make your filing — on your own, with the help of a service provider like HR Block or Jackson Hewitt, or online with a program like TurboTax — you should know that there are some pretty significant deductions you can claim for monies you spent in pursuit of online education with Allen School Online. Now I am not an accountant and I don’t suggest you take this material as legally qualified tax planning advice. But there are places you can go to find out about the deductions you may be entitled to for spending time and money studying medical office assistant and/or medical billing and coding. Start here for a pretty good overview of what you can reasonably deduct. The list includes tuition, interest paid on educational loans, cost of books, supplies and materials and other school-related expenses. Depending on your level of income, you may or may not derive benefit from these deductions, but its worth a few extra minutes to look into what you may qualify for. After all, why leave money on the table?
Its officially the beginning of tax season and with that in mind the Allen School Blog will be including some posts on ways that students can maximize their returns. In the post, we link to a a short piece explaining how students between the ages of 19 and 24 can take advantage of the Hope Tax Credit and the Lifetime Learning Tax Credit. Click here for more detailed information on how to claim these deductions and hopefully recuperate a portion of your tuition expenses courtesy of ehow.com.
With the legislature considering taxing so-called “unhealthy” food or beverage items as a way to raise revenues while encouraging better diet amongst Americans, each of us should spend some time focusing a little bit on how we eat and what we eat. As I have written here before, I think it is a mistake to single out individual food items (pizza and soda were recently singled out in one of these new tax proposals) as “unhealthy”. For one thing, portion sizes are a larger problem than the nature of what we eat. If you eat one or two slices of pizza at meal time, you’re not packing on the pounds. Eating 5 slices each time you eat pizza is much more likely to make you gain weight. Today, I read an article that blew up my conception of what is healthy to eat and what is not. Often, things we tend to think of as “healthy” foods are worse for us than things we think of as “no-nos”. Follow me past the jump for the shocking details. Continue reading…
“CHICAGO (Reuters) – U.S. researchers estimate that an 18 percent tax on pizza and soda can push down U.S. adults’ calorie intake enough to lower their average weight by 5 pounds (2 kg) per year. The researchers, writing in the journal Archives of Internal Medicine on Monday, suggested taxing could be used as a weapon in the fight against obesity, which costs the United States an estimated $147 billion a year in health costs.”We had written about this proposal once before here at the Allen School Online blog, when the proposed tax was put forth in New York State. Now it seems the idea has taken hold nationwide. I can sort of see the value in taxing sodas, which contain ungodly quantities of sugar in a single serving. I might suggest taxing all items that contain high fructose corn syrup (but that will never fly because our government pays huge subsidies to corn farmers to produce this deadly sugar.) Furthermore, soda is sold by all restaurants and groceries so a tax on soda would at least be equitably distributed across all foodservice and sales businesses. However, I draw the line of fairness at singling out pizza for additional taxation. What, do obese people not overeat fried chicken? Chinese food buffet? Ice cream sundaes? Why discriminate against pizzeria owners for this new tax? Eating pizza specifically is not the only driver of obesity. I could live with a soda tax,but to start singling out individual foods for additional taxation is a very bad idea. What do you think?
Ahh, a new year has begun and that means the new tax season is upon us. Like many, you may wait until the April 15th IRS deadline for filing. But this year, there are a range of new tax deductions and credits available to students, drivers, homeowners and home buyers. With so much of your money at stake, it may be a good year to start a little early on your taxes so you can spend some time investigating if you’re eligible for any of the new credits or deductions available to taxpayers this year. Did you buy a new car? Are you a full time student? Did you replace appliances, windows or other energy saving items in your home? Do you have children? If you answered yes to any of these questions, there is new information available that can help you make your return fatter. Click here for a good list of all the new credits and deductions.
New York’s Governor, David Patterson recently proposed a tax on non-diet soft drinks. No doubt it would succeed as a revenue generator for the state, but would it work as a way to sway behavior? Continue reading…