Deductions

Standard deduction

We allow all filing statuses to claim the standard deduction.

We have a lower standard deduction than the IRS.

Do you qualify for the standard deduction?

You can claim the standard deduction unless someone else claims you as a dependent on their tax return.

Do not use the below chart if someone else claims you on their return.

2018 Standard deduction amounts

Filing status Enter on line 18 of your 540
Single or married/Registered Domestic Partner (RDP) filing separate $4,401
Married/RDP filing joint, head of household, or qualifying widow(er) $8,802

Standard deduction for dependents

If someone else claims you on their tax return, use this calculation.

1. Enter your income from: line 1 of the "Standard Deduction Worksheet" in the instructions for federal Form 1040; Form 1040A; or from line A of the worksheet on the back of Form 1040EZ.

1.

2. Minimum standard deduction

2. $1,050

3. Enter the larger of line 1 or line 2 here

3.

4. Enter amount shown for your filing status:

  • Single or married/RDP filing separate, enter $4,401
  • Married/RDP filing joint, head of household, or qualifying widow(er) enter $8,802

4.

5. Enter the smaller of line 3 or line 4 here and on Form 540, line 18. This is your standard deduction.

5.

Itemized deductions

Itemized deductions are expenses that you can claim on your tax return. They can decrease your taxable income.

We do not conform to all federal itemized deductions.

You should itemize your deductions if:

  • Your total itemized deductions are more than your standard deduction
  • You do not qualify to claim the standard deduction

Common itemized deductions

Your deductions cannot be more than 50% of your California (CA) adjusted gross income (AGI).
Deduction CA allowable amount Federal allowable amount
Medical and dental expenses Expenses that exceed 7.5% of your federal AGI Expenses that exceed 7.5% of your federal AGI
Home mortgage interest On home purchases up to $1,000,000 On home purchases up to $750,000
Real estate tax deduction May be limited if it exceeds 50% of your AGI. $10,000
Vehicle/Vessel license fee May be limited if it exceeds 50% of your AGI. $10,000
Unreimbursed employee business expenses Limited to 2% of your AGI None
Gambling losses Cannot exceed your winnings. Cannot exceed your winnings.
Disaster loss Losses that exceed $100 and 10% of your Federal AGI Losses that exceed $100 and 10% of your Federal AGI
Alimony As of December 31, 2018, the IRS no longer allows this deduction TBD