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  1. #1
    don't tase me, bro! Asylum Steve's Avatar
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    Hey US TAXPAYERS, any "unusual" deductions this year???

    Well, I have to say I'm very disappointed. It's 5:30pm eastern on April 15th, and I'm ALREADY done with my income tax return. Looks like I don't get to enjoy that special "heart pounding" anxiety that comes with getting it finished as close to midnight as possible...

    So, I'm basking in the afterglow of just having e-filed, and was wondering if anybody had any wierd or unusual deductions they tried to sneak by the IRS this year. Just between friends...

    My return was pretty straight forward (thank goodness for those Section 179 deductions, eh?), but what I found interesting is that in 2003 I spent about $1100 on BOOKS. Guess you could say that's one of my weaknesses...

    Anyway, if you think that's a lot, in 2002 I spent close to $1500...

    Anybody want to guess how many of those are PHOTOSHOP books? ;)
    "Riding along on a carousel...tryin' to catch up to you..."

    -Steve
    Studio & Lighting - Photography As Art Forum Moderator

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  2. #2
    Liz
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    Moderator Emeritus Liz's Avatar
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    Smile Good News & Bad News!

    Hi Steve -

    The good news is that I get $611 back. Bad news is - I already spent it. HA!

    I purchased a 2nd carry-with-me camera - a G3 about 3 weeks ago.

    Well, I'm with you Steve......last minute just about every year.

    However, my forms are simple - used to do 1040 or 1040EZ. Now I do the Telefile for both - last year was the first time I could do the IRS form by phone. It is so easy. Just fill in the gross amount earned, interest, what employer deducted and the IRS calculates the rest. Well, now you know I'm not in the 6 figure bracket yet!

    However, I got up at 3:30 a.m. to be sure I had all the forms, etc.....Then I made a mistake on the NJ state telefile call. So, they wouldn't let me do it over the phone. I tried online, and they wouldn't let me do it that way either. At least the IRS gives you many 2nd chances if you hit the wrong key and you can call back later when you get your act together. So I had to download the state 1040 form and do it that way. Not bad......

    In Paterson you can drop off your tax forms until midnight. It's kind of cool. The post office staff are outside - they have rock music playing. You just drive by one of them with your arm out the window & they grab the envelop. They're usually walking/dancing to the beat of the music. It's a nice upbeat way to do it.

    Nice topic. Interesting to see that I'm not the only last minute tax payer!

    Liz

    Quote Originally Posted by Asylum Steve
    Well, I have to say I'm very disappointed. It's 5:30pm eastern on April 15th, and I'm ALREADY done with my income tax return. Looks like I don't get to enjoy that special "heart pounding" anxiety that comes with getting it finished as close to midnight as possible...

    So, I'm basking in the afterglow of just having e-filed, and was wondering if anybody had any wierd or unusual deductions they tried to sneak by the IRS this year. Just between friends...

    My return was pretty straight forward (thanks goodness for those Section 179 deductions, eh?), but what I found interesting is that in 2003 I spent about $1100 on BOOKS. Guess you could say that's one of my weaknesses...

    Anyway, if you think that's a lot, in 2002 I spent close to $1500...

    Anybody want to guess how many of those are PHOTOSHOP books? ;)

  3. #3
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    I'm getting a refund

    I finished mine, yesterday. I'm getting a refund. And I'm buying camera equipment with it! Unfortunately, I'm buying camera equipment I already have. Gotta give it all to the credit card companies.

    Interesting data from my 2003 return - I spent less on new equipment and less overall, and I grossed more - although I still haven't made a profit on my photography business. The most interesting thing I discovered when I was doing my taxes is that I spent way more last year on travel than I ever did in the past. I think tat's a good place for me to be investing my money. Travel means new places and new people to shoot. Variety makes for a more interesting portfolio and means lots of new technical challgenes. And it keeps life interesting, too.

    Liz got a G3. Anyone else actually get to buy new stuff with their refund?
    Photo-John

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  4. #4
    Ghost
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    Got my taxes done a couple weeks ago and already have the returns (over $1,000). It's all going straight to debt.......B-O-R-I-N-G!

    I bought an iPod though....am I "hip" now?

  5. #5
    don't tase me, bro! Asylum Steve's Avatar
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    Good point, I suppose I should add...

    Penny,

    You make a good point about filing at the last minute (or day anyway). It's not so much that I'm a procrastinator, but rather that I definitely have to PAY TAX. And so, like you guys, I want to hold onto my money as long as possible...

    BTW, I took great pleasure deducting my travel expenses for the Chicago Gathering. It was so much fun, it (almost) doesn't seem fair. Next year I'll have the Miami (and hopefully CALI and NY) receipts to work with!

    Oh, and Liz, as much a pain as it is to file as a freelancer, at least Florida has NO state income tax!

    Quote Originally Posted by prbowhay
    Dear Steve:

    We always put off doing our taxes to the very last minute because we ALWAYS owe! Try as we may and try as we might -- it just works out that EVERY year, we have to pay. We believe that we are the government's own personal ATM machine.

    That's why we are so glad we have the NYC Gathering coming up next week -- we NEED the fun and frivolity to take our minds off this darkest day of the year.

    Best to You,
    Penny
    "Riding along on a carousel...tryin' to catch up to you..."

    -Steve
    Studio & Lighting - Photography As Art Forum Moderator

    Running the Photo Asylum, Asylum Steve's blogged brain pipes...
    www.stevenpaulhlavac.com
    www.photoasylum.com

  6. #6
    Viewfinder and Off-Topic Co-Mod walterick's Avatar
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    This was my first year without a W2.

    I filed as completely self-employed. That's a first.

    Can I just say... "DAMN THE 15% SELF-EMPLOYMENT TAX!!" They should tailor it so that the guys just starting out get a break.

    That being said, I made pennies last year and only owed $2300

    My only deduction was my student loan interest.

    Rick
    Walter Rick Long
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  7. #7
    We just can't have nice things... darkrainfall's Avatar
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    Florida.... nice, sunnie Florida

    I may be hallucinating, as I have been sick most of the week and cold medicine does make me rather spacey, but did Steve say there was no state income tax in Florida?
    My only other question before moving would be to ask if Florida has personal property tax, as I have a bad habit of collecting cars.....
    *smiles*

    I have never attempted to file my taxes, I've always had friends and family who are willing to do that for me... I'm so spoiled... but I think I'm getting some money back this year... all to be paid to my credit card company for my latest lense and car expenditures, I'm afraid...

  8. #8
    Mi tortuga es guapo. Kokopeli's Avatar
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    I file mine on...

    Jan. 31 EVERY year, that way I can get my refund by the second week of February.

    Like Liz, I file the 1040 or the 1040EZ and I usually get a good return. I really love being a single, full time parent, especially at tax time since it's the only time I seem to get some sort of monetary reward for having my boys!!! The rest of the year it would seem that I'm always spending it on them.

    My return paid for my D100, an extra battery, Capture 4, a vertical grip AND it funded my trip to Vegas over Valentine's Day weekend as well as bought PJ and me a darn good dinner while we were there!! It also paid my car insurance for the year, but I won't mention that because I don't want to rub it in.

    As for all you that have to pay the bastages at the IRS.. I feel for you and don't blame you for waiting as long as you possibly can!

    Good thread Steve.. Thanks for starting it!
    ~Brian
    Nikon Samurai #3


    A good friend will come and bail you out of jail...but, a true
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  9. #9
    Princess of the OT adina's Avatar
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    We're like Brian

    Ours is filed at the latest by the end of the first week in Feb. Of course with that handy child credit, we usually rake it in. Plus we have student loan and mortgage stuff to claim.

    This year our return paid for service maintenence on both cars, new dance attire for the kids, other misc. bills that came up around then, and credit card debt. Someday I'm hoping that we get to do something fun with our return, but so far, it's been boring stuff.

    adina

  10. #10
    Hardcore...Nikon Speed's Avatar
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    Talking No "Unusual" Deductions...

    Quote Originally Posted by Asylum Steve
    Well, I have to say I'm very disappointed. It's 5:30pm eastern on April 15th, and I'm ALREADY done with my income tax return. Looks like I don't get to enjoy that special "heart pounding" anxiety that comes with getting it finished as close to midnight as possible...

    So, I'm basking in the afterglow of just having e-filed, and was wondering if anybody had any wierd or unusual deductions they tried to sneak by the IRS this year. Just between friends...

    My return was pretty straight forward (thank goodness for those Section 179 deductions, eh?), but what I found interesting is that in 2003 I spent about $1100 on BOOKS. Guess you could say that's one of my weaknesses...

    Anyway, if you think that's a lot, in 2002 I spent close to $1500...

    Anybody want to guess how many of those are PHOTOSHOP books? ;)
    But this is the first year we've gotten a refund. Funny thing is, all we did was buy a house! :-O

    Of course, our refund went to paying off the wife's student loan.

    Thanks for the inspiration Steve! Now I don't feel nearly as bad for spending $200 on photography books!!! :-)
    Nikon Samurai # 1


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  11. #11
    Frequent Lurker
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    Steve is correct. Florida does not have a state income tax, but don't think they don't get it from you in other ways such as sales tax, property taxes, etc. Still, I wouldn't want to live anywhere else, at least not right now. Currently it is sunny and supposed to be 80 today with clear skys.

    Terry

  12. #12
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Thank you, IRS!

    That was an excellent dinner! Although you shouldn't forget that it was actually money that you earned. The government just "borrowed" (hijacked?) it for a a few months.
    Photo-John

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  13. #13
    nature/wildlife co-moderator paulnj's Avatar
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    I'M way too smart for them...... they gave me my tax $ back AND PAID ME $375 EXTRA

    but mind you I made 75% CASH and under 10k with my SS#...... my deductions made my taxable income..ZERO and I telefile

    HAHAHAHA... tree work sells at $50-$125 per man hour CASH depending on my mood

    next year I will write off EVERY single piece of photo gear, gas, vehicle,vacations...... taxable income will be ZERO AGAIN if i can help it
    CAMERA BIRD NERD #1




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  14. #14
    Mi tortuga es guapo. Kokopeli's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Photo-John
    That was an excellent dinner! Although you shouldn't forget that it was actually money that you earned. The government just "borrowed" (hijacked?) it for a a few months.
    Yes it was!! I guarantee I'll eat at a Ruth's Chris Steakhouse again. Next time you are down in my area though, there's another place I want you to try.. It's called Stubrics (pronounced Stub-ricks)... They also have fantastic steaks, though not quite the quality of the ones we had. It's a quite a bit more affordable as well and has a completely different atmosphere.

    Hijacked is a much more appropriate term and believe me, I NEVER forget that the money I get back is mine! I play the game though.. I claim "Single 0" through out the year so when tax time rolls around, I get a whopper of a return. I've found that to be the best way for me to save $$ for things I want. I have a hard time just saving money from week to week...
    ~B
    Nikon Samurai #3


    A good friend will come and bail you out of jail...but, a true
    friend will be sitting next to you saying, "Damn...that was fun!"

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