Video: Tax Tips for Teachers
Note: The content of this video applies only to taxes prepared for 2011 and earlier. It is included here for reference only.
Hello, I'm Sara from TurboTax with important news about special tax deductions for teachers. Did you use personal funds this year to buy supplies or books for your students? If so, you can deduct $250 of those costs from your taxes and you don't even need to itemize your deductions to do so. If you spent more than that, you can deduct those costs as well, but you can only include them in your itemized deductions.
There is even a deduction for college professors who incur research expenses. You can deduct these costs if the research topics relate to a subject you teach. You may not even realize it, but these types of costs can really add up if you have to travel long distances to conferences, subscribe to some premium research websites and pay printing and postage to send your articles and books to perspective publishers.
But before you can start figuring out your expenses this year, make sure you're eligible to itemize your deductions. Otherwise you cannot take the deduction.
You should also be aware that the Lifetime Learning Credit is available if you ever go back to school to pursue another degree or just improve your teaching skills.