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Taxpayers with Disabilities may Qualify for the EITC

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The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is a federal income tax credit that is available to workers who earned $53,930 or less in 2017. The EITC is a refundable credit, so those who qualify could end up paying less in federal taxes or even receiving a refund. Unfortunately, many taxpayers with disabilities or who are parents of children with disabilities are not aware that they may qualify for this credit because they fall below the income threshold that requires them to file a tax return. To ensure that you don’t miss out on this opportunity, please contact an experienced Florida tax return preparation attorney who can help determine whether you qualify for the EITC.

Filing a Tax Return  

The IRS recently issued an announcement reminding those who have disabilities or children with disabilities to file a tax return, even if their income does not meet the threshold requiring them to do so. This is because by filing a tax return, qualifying taxpayers who claim the EITC could receive a refund of up to $6,318. However, the only way that an eligible taxpayer can collect this benefit is if he or she actually files a tax return and claims the credit.

Eligibility Requirements  

Aside from earning less than $53,930 a year, taxpayers only qualify for the EITC if they have earned income, which usually means income derived from a job or from self-employment. Fortunately, taxpayers who retired as a result of a disability can also count any taxable benefits that they receive under an employer’s disability retirement plan as earned income. These types of benefits will continue to qualify as earned income until the taxpayer reaches minimum retirement age. It’s important to keep in mind that Social Security benefits and Social Security Disability Income don’t count as earned income when it comes to qualifying for the EITC. Additionally, taxpayers can claim a child or other relative with a disability to receive the EITC on their behalf, but only if all other requirements are met.

Eligibility for Public Benefits  

Many disabled taxpayers are concerned that receiving a tax refund will affect their eligibility for public benefits, such as Medicaid and Social Security disability. Fortunately, federal law clearly states that tax refunds, including refunds from credits, are not counted as income when determining whether a person is eligible for public benefits. This applies equally to federal programs, as well as any state programs that are financed with federal funds.

Receiving a Refund 

Qualifying taxpayers who submit their tax return on time and claim the EITC may receive their refunds later this year, as the IRS is prohibited from issuing refunds for credits before the middle of February. The IRS expects that at the earliest, refunds will be available by February 27, but only if the taxpayer chose direct deposit and there were no other problems with the return. For this reason, taxpayers are urged to file as soon as possible to prevent delays.

Get the Legal Representation You Deserve  

To speak with dedicated Florida tax return preparation attorney Ronald Cutler, P.A. about your own eligibility for the EITC, please call 386-490-9949 today and a member of our legal team will help you schedule a free consultation.

Resource:

irs.gov/newsroom/irs-special-rules-help-many-with-disabilities-qualify-for-earned-income-tax-credit