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Video: Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) Explained

Updated for Tax Year 2017


OVERVIEW

It is important to understand how your adjusted gross income (AGI) affects your taxable income. The IRS uses your AGI to determine whether you can claim certain deductions and credits and the amounts you're eligible for. For more information to help you better understand Adjusted Gross Income, also known as AGI, watch this TurboTax tax tip video.


Video transcript

Hi, I'm Amir from TurboTax with some information to help you better understand Adjusted Gross Income, also known as AGI.

The IRS uses your AGI to determine whether you can claim certain deductions and credits and the amounts you're eligible for. The calculation is pretty simple.

  • Your total income - certain tax deductions the IRS calls "adjustments to income" = your AGI

You can find a list of those deductions on the first page the standard Form 1040. Note that there will be a lot less of them if you're using a 1040A and none at all are allowed on a 1040EZ.

Your AGI will also have an impact on the amount of itemized tax deductions you can report.

  • Some expenses must be reduced by a percentage of your AGI.
  • Your federal AGI can also have an impact on your state return, as many states use your federal AGI as a starting point for calculating your state taxable income and your eligibility to claim deductions.

For certain tax deductions, the IRS uses a calculation called MAGI or modified adjusted gross income. Your MAGI can change based on the deduction, but it's essentially your AGI plus any deductions the IRS requires you to add back in, like tax exempt interest income. Calculating your MAGI helps to determine if you qualify for these deductions.

With TurboTax, we’ll ask you simple questions and do the calculations for you. For more information about this and other tax topics, visit TurboTax.com.

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The above article is intended to provide generalized financial information designed to educate a broad segment of the public; it does not give personalized tax, investment, legal, or other business and professional advice. Before taking any action, you should always seek the assistance of a professional who knows your particular situation for advice on taxes, your investments, the law, or any other business and professional matters that affect you and/or your business.


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