2020 was a tax year like no other, due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Now, with the arrival of the tax-filing season for 2020, comes a flood of new questions: How do I file for a stimulus payment through my tax return, and is it taxable? What about those Flexible Spending Account dollars I didn’t use in 2020? Will I owe zero tax on my capital gains? What’s the deadline for contributing to a Roth IRA? Does the March 2021 relief law affect me?
The Wall Street Journal Tax Guide, available to download for Journal subscribers, aims to answer these questions and many more that are confusing taxpayers. In addition to pandemic tax changes, this year’s guide discusses a wide range of provisions and includes rates, brackets and many other tax benchmarks for 2020 and 2021.
In mid-March Congress passed a third stimulus package and enacted unprecedented tax breaks for families with children for 2021 only. Soon after, the IRS delayed the April 15 tax-due date for 2020 returns to May 17 for individuals—but not other taxpayers such as corporations. (In Texas, Louisiana and Oklahoma, the due date for federal returns is June 15 due to storm disasters.)
There were other key tax changes unrelated to the pandemic, such as for cryptocurrency enforcement, medical-expense deductions, and education benefits, plus the annual inflation adjustments that affect some tax benchmarks but not others.
Here’s a selection of what’s in this year’s guide:
- Income-Tax Rates and Brackets
- Investment-Tax Rates and Brackets
- Pandemic Stimulus Payments
- State Taxes on Remote Work
- Mortgage-Interest Deduction
- Temporary Charitable Donation Deductions
- Emergency Withdrawals From Retirement Accounts
- Flexible Spending Account Withdrawal
- Tax Information for First-Time Taxpayers and Business Owners
- What President Biden’s Tax Agenda Means For You
We hope this guide will help readers in the many different areas of their lives touched by taxes, such as saving for college, buying or selling a home, and using retirement plans, as well as with the pandemic disruptions. If you still have questions, join us on March 2, 2021, for a live conversation.
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