Hurricane Irma Personal Casualty Losses Update

The many victims of Hurricane Irma, as well as other recent storms, are now preoccupied with salvaging personal possessions and determining what their insurance will cover. When the extent of their losses becomes clear, victims will want to know what tax help they’re entitled to.  Most tax help will come in the form of a casualty loss.  We issued an article concerning this subject on September 27, 2017, that explained casualty losses in general.  We are now updating this information for recent changes in law.

Recent legislation

On September 28, 2017, Congress passed the “Disaster Tax Relief and Airport and Airway Extension Act of 2017”, which authorizes the Federal government deliver temporary tax relief to the victims of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria. Tax provisions in the bill would make it easier for people with hurricane losses to write them off on their taxes by eliminating a requirement that personal losses must exceed 10% of adjusted gross income to qualify for a deduction (see article called “Personal Casualty Loss Rules issued September 27, 2017).

The new law also would give hurricane victims penalty-free access to retirement funds and temporarily suspend limitations on the deduction for charitable contributions to hurricane relief made before year-end. President Trump signed the bill into law on September 29, 2017.

We are currently digesting the information in the bill and will send out information concerning this law soon. Periodically, check our website or social media for updates.


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