Richard A. Lindsey, CPA

Lindsey & Waldo, LLC – Certified Public Accountants

  • Sep 16

    Since 2002, the above-the-line deduction for certain classroom expenses of elementary and secondary schoolteachers was in doubt nearly every other year. The temporary provision was renewed six times as an “extender” item – each time retroactively – until late last year when Congress made it permanent, expanded the deduction to cover professional development expenditures and indexed its $250 maximum amount for inflation. Now, qualifying educators can rely on the deduction each year and potentially realize a greater benefit from it.

    Qualified expenses include ordinary and necessary expenses paid in connection with books, supplies, equipment (including computer equipment, software, and services), and other materials used in the classroom. An ordinary expense is one that is common and accepted in your educational field. A necessary expense is one that is helpful and appropriate for your profession as an educator. An expense does not have to be required to be considered necessary. Expenses incurred to meet the minimum requirements of the educator’s present job or to qualify for a new profession may not be deductible.

    Qualified expenses do not include expenses for home schooling or for nonathletic supplies for courses in health or physical education.

    An eligible educator is a kindergarten through grade 12 teacher, instructor, counselor, principal, or aide in school for at least 900 hours during a school year.

    Naturally, the IRS recommends that educators keep all receipts and other documentation in order to substantiate their qualified expenses.

    Any unreimbursed educator expenses that exceed the $250 ceiling may be claimed as miscellaneous itemized deductions subject to the 2%-of-adjusted-gross-income- (AGI) floor.

  • Sep 2

    I doubt few of us can forget where we were 15 years ago when the attacks began on the morning of September 11, 2001. That horrible, tragic day is forever etched in our memories.

    Patriot Day is observed in remembrance of the nearly 3,000 people who lost their lives that day. On that day, two hijacked airplanes were deliberately crashed into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City. A third hijacked airplane crashed into the Pentagon and a fourth crashed into a Pennsylvania field before hitting its suspected target, the White House.

    Like the unprovoked attack on Pearl Harbor that brought us into World War II, the 9-11 attacks ushered us into a new war… the war on terrorism. It also touched and changed the lives of each and every American forever.

    In the days, weeks and months following 9-11, the U.S. was bathed in American flags as citizens mourned the incredible losses and stood shoulder-to-shoulder against terrorism. Sadly, many of the flags have disappeared. Our patriotism has pulled us through some tough times and it shouldn’t take another attack to galvanize our solidarity. Together we can prevail over terrorism of all kinds.