What Is the Standard Deduction on Form 1040-SR?

Posted by David Funes on Mar 20, 2022

1040-1173614062

Vision loss among the elderly is a serious problem – according to the American Academy of Family Physicians, one in three seniors over the age of 65 has some type of vision impairment. Macular degeneration, cataracts, glaucoma, and diabetic retinopathy are the most common causes of age-related vision loss.¹

These conditions typically lead to reduced ability to perform daily activities, including reading and writing. To that end, the Internal Revenue Service created Form 1040-SR as part of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018. This form – available to taxpayers who have turned 65 by the end of the current filing year – is a mirror image of the standard Form 1040 that’s long been used to file simple annual tax returns. However, there are a few big changes to the Form 1040-SR, most notably a larger font to help seniors with vision issues complete the form more easily when filing tax returns in longhand. There’s also an embedded standard deduction table that makes it easy for seniors to understand their standard deduction amount if they aren’t itemizing their tax deductions.


2021 Form 1040-SR Tax Return For Seniors Standard Deductions

Seniors don’t have to take the standard deduction shown on Form 1040-SR; however, for simple returns that don’t include many different forms of income, choosing the standard deduction may prove easier. The form does allow seniors to denote their various forms of income, including wages, qualified dividends, IRA distributions, pensions, and social security benefits.

Below are the standard deductions for 2021 Form 1040-SR.² One item of note: At the top of the form is a section that asks the age of you and your spouse and if either of you are blind. The number of boxes checked in this section has a direct correlation to the amount you can claim for your standard deduction.

 

               Filing Status          Age/Blindness checked boxes   Standard deduction    

Single

1

2

$14,250

$15,950


Married, filing jointly

1

2

3

4

$26,450

$27,800

$29,150

$30,500

Qualifying widow(er)

1

2

$26,450

$27,800

Head of household

1

2

$20,500

$22,200


Married, filing separately

1

2

3

4

$13,900

$15,250

$16,600

$17,950

 

The standard deduction table listed above also can be found on the last page of Form 1040-SR.


The Bottom Line

Form 1040-SR makes it easier for seniors with age-related vision problems to fill out their annual tax returns. If you are under the age of 65 at the end of the tax year you can’t use Form 1040-SR. The form comes with larger type and bigger boxes to write in that were designed to increase readability and help seniors who complete paper tax returns more easily. This U.S. Tax Return for Seniors also has an embedded standard deduction chart (reprinted above) that includes the higher dollar amounts seniors over the age of 65 are able to claim.

Sources:

1. Common Causes of Vision Loss in Elderly Patients, AAFP, https://www.aafp.org/afp/1999/0701/p99.html

2. New Form 1040_SR Alternative Filing Option Available For Seniors, IRS.gov, https://www.irs.gov/forms-pubs/about-form-1040-sr


This material is for general information and educational purposes only. Information is based on data gathered from what we believe are reliable sources. It is not guaranteed as to accuracy, does not purport to be complete and is not intended to be used as a primary basis for investment decisions. It should also not be construed as advice meeting the particular investment needs of any investor. Realized does not provide tax or legal advice. This material is not a substitute for seeking the advice of a qualified professional for your individual situation.

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