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IRS.gov Website
Instructions for Form 1040
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP69233830

Tax and Credits(p33)

rule
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP71225a51

Line 39a(p33)

rule
If you were born before January 2, 1947, or were blind at the end of 2011, check the appropriate box(es) on line 39a. If you were married and checked the box on Form 1040, line 6b, and your spouse was born before January 2, 1947, or was blind at the end of 2011, also check the appropriate box(es) for your spouse. Be sure to enter the total number of boxes checked. Do not check any box(es) for your spouse if your filing status is head of household.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP0a0633c1

Blindness(p33)

rule
If you were not totally blind as of December 31, 2011, you must get a statement certified by your eye doctor (ophthalmologist or optometrist) that:
If your eye condition is not likely to improve beyond the conditions listed above, you can get a statement certified by your eye doctor (ophthalmologist or optometrist) to this effect instead.
You must keep the statement for your records.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP6d5af03e

Line 39b(p33)

rule
If your filing status is married filing separately (box 3 is checked), and your spouse itemizes deductions on his or her return, check the box on line 39b. Also check that box if you were a dual-status alien. But if you were a dual-status alien and you file a joint return with your spouse who was a U.S. citizen or resident alien at the end of 2011 and you and your spouse agree to be taxed on your combined worldwide income, do not check the box.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP2d5e6d94

Line 40(p33)

rule
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP21600649

Itemized Deductions or Standard Deduction(p33)

rule
In most cases, your federal income tax will be less if you take the larger of your itemized deductions or standard deduction.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP0f5752cb

Itemized Deductions(p33)

rule
To figure your itemized deductions, fill in Schedule A.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP72aae42f

Standard Deduction(p33)

rule
Most people can find their standard deduction by looking at the amounts listed under All others to the left of line 40.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP334b3aa5
Exception 1 – dependent.(p33)
rule
If you, or your spouse if filing jointly, can be claimed as a dependent on someone else's 2011 return, use the Standard Deduction Worksheet for Dependents to figure your standard deduction.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP2d0c3295
Exception 2 – box on line 39a checked.(p33)
rule
If you checked any box on line 39a, use the chart below the Standard Deduction Worksheet for Dependents to figure your standard deduction.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP1598e0c6
Exception 3 – box on line 39b checked.(p33)
rule
If you checked the box on line 39b, your standard deduction is zero, even if you were born before January 2, 1947, or were blind.
caution
If you received a refund in 2011 of an amount (such as real estate taxes) that increased your standard deduction in an earlier year, you generally have to include the refund in your income. See Recoveries in Pub. 525.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#w24811v10
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Standard Deduction Worksheet for Dependents—Line 40

Use this worksheet only if someone can claim you, or your spouse if filing jointly, as a dependent.

1. Is your earned income* more than $650?    
   boxYes.Add $300 to your earned income. Enter the total Right brace.1. 
   boxNo.Enter $950
2. Enter the amount shown below for your filing status.   
 
  • Single or married filing separately—$5,800
  • Married filing jointly or qualifying widow(er)—$11,600
  • Head of household—$8,500
Right brace .2. 
3. Standard deduction.     
 a.Enter the smaller of line 1 or line 2. If born after January 1, 1947, and not blind, stop here and enter this amount on Form 1040, line 40. Otherwise, go to line 3b 3a. 
 b.If born before January 2, 1947, or blind, multiply the number on Form 1040, line 39a, by $1,150 ($1,450 if single or head of household) 3b. 
 c.Add lines 3a and 3b. Enter the total here and on Form 1040, line 403c. 
* Earned income includes wages, salaries, tips, professional fees, and other compensation received for personal services you performed. It also includes any amount received as a scholarship that you must include in your income. Generally, your earned income is the total of the amount(s) you reported on Form 1040, lines 7, 12, and 18, minus the amount, if any, on line 27.
Standard Deduction Chart for People Who Were Born Before January 2, 1947, or Were Blind
Do not use this chart if someone can claim you, or your spouse if filing jointly, as a dependent. Instead, use the worksheet above.
Enter the number from the box on
Form 1040, line 39a
square   caution Do not use the number of exemptions from line 6d. 
IF your filing
status is . . .
AND the number in
the box above is . . .
 THEN your standard
deduction is . . .
 
Single1
2
 $7,250
8,700
  
Married filing jointly
    or
Qualifying widow(er)
1
2
3
4
 $12,750
13,900
15,050
16,200
  
Married filing separately1
2
3
4
 $6,950
8,100
9,250
10,400
  
Head of household1
2
  $9,950
11,400
  
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP4569b648

Line 44(p35)

rule
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP230879c8

Tax(p35)

rule
Include in the total on line 44 all of the following taxes that apply.
Do you want the IRS to figure the tax on your taxable income for you?
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP5f1f5d50
  Yes.(p35)
rule
See chapter 29 of Pub. 17 for details, including who is eligible and what to do. If you have paid too much, we will send you a refund. If you did not pay enough, we will send you a bill.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP3426286b
  No.(p35)
rule
Use one of the following methods to figure your tax.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP58f329b4
Tax Table or Tax Computation Worksheet.(p35)
rule
If your taxable income is less than $100,000, you must use the Tax Table, later in these instructions, to figure your tax. Be sure you use the correct column. If your taxable income is $100,000 or more, use the Tax Computation Worksheet right after the Tax Table.
However, do not use the Tax Table or Tax Computation Worksheet to figure your tax if any of the following applies.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP0af247e2
Form 8615.(p35)
rule
Form 8615 generally must be used to figure the tax for any child who had more than $1,900 of investment income, such as taxable interest, ordinary dividends, or capital gains (including capital gain distributions), and who either:
  1. Was under age 18 at the end of 2011,
  2. Was age 18 at the end of 2011 and did not have earned income that was more than half of the child's support, or
  3. Was a full-time student over age 18 and under age 24 at the end of 2011 and did not have earned income that was more than half of the child's support.
But if the child files a joint return for 2011 or if neither of the child's parents was alive at the end of 2011, do not use Form 8615 to figure the child's tax.
A child born on January 1, 1994, is considered to be age 18 at the end of 2011; a child born on January 1, 1993, is considered to be age 19 at the end of 2011; a child born on January 1, 1988, is considered to be age 24 at the end of 2011.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP301c1bfd
Schedule D Tax Worksheet.(p35)
rule
If you have to file Schedule D, and line 18 or 19 of Schedule D is more than zero, use the Schedule D Tax Worksheet in the Instructions for Schedule D to figure the amount to enter on Form 1040, line 44. But if you are filing Form 2555 or 2555-EZ, you must use the Foreign Earned Income Tax Worksheet instead.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP1e64b16c
Qualified Dividends and Capital Gain Tax Worksheet.(p35)
rule
Use the Qualified Dividends and Capital Gain Tax Worksheet, later, to figure your tax if you do not have to use the Schedule D Tax Worksheet and if any of the following applies.
But if you are filing Form 2555 or 2555-EZ, you must use the Foreign Earned Income Tax Worksheet instead.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP232a90c6
Schedule J.(p35)
rule
If you had income from farming or fishing (including certain amounts received in connection with the Exxon Valdez litigation), your tax may be less if you choose to figure it using income averaging on Schedule J.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP4d00a08c
Foreign Earned Income Tax Worksheet.(p35)
rule
If you claimed the foreign earned income exclusion, housing exclusion, or housing deduction on Form 2555 or 2555-EZ, you must figure your tax using the Foreign Earned Income Tax Worksheet.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#w24811v39
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Foreign Earned Income Tax Worksheet—Line 44

caution If Form 1040, line 43, is zero, do not complete this worksheet.
1.Enter the amount from Form 1040, line 431.
2.Enter the amount from your (and your spouse's, if filing jointly) Form 2555, lines 45 and 50, or Form 2555-EZ, line 182.
3.Add lines 1 and 23.
4.Tax on the amount on line 3. Use the Tax Table, Tax Computation Worksheet, Qualified Dividends and Capital Gain Tax Worksheet*, Schedule D Tax Worksheet*, or Form 8615, whichever applies. See the instructions for line 44 to see which tax computation method applies. (Do not use a second Foreign Earned Income Tax Worksheet to figure the tax on this line) 4.
5.Tax on the amount on line 2. If the amount on line 2 is less than $100,000, use the Tax Table to figure this tax. If the amount on line 2 is $100,000 or more, use the Tax Computation Worksheet 5.
6.Subtract line 5 from line 4. Enter the result. If zero or less, enter -0-. Also include this amount on Form 1040, line 446.
*Enter the amount from line 3 above on line 1 of the Qualified Dividends and Capital Gain Tax Worksheet or Schedule D Tax Worksheet if you use either of those worksheets to figure the tax on line 4 above. Complete the rest of that worksheet through line 6 (line 10 if you use the Schedule D Tax Worksheet). Next, you must determine if you have a capital gain excess. To find out if you have a capital gain excess, subtract Form 1040, line 43, from line 6 of your Qualified Dividends and Capital Gain Tax Worksheet (line 10 of your Schedule D Tax Worksheet). If the result is more than zero, that amount is your capital gain excess.
 If you do not have a capital gain excess, complete the rest of either of those worksheets according to the worksheet's instructions. Then complete lines 5 and 6 above.
 If you have a capital gain excess, complete a second Qualified Dividends and Capital Gain Tax Worksheet or Schedule D Tax Worksheet (whichever applies) as instructed above but in its entirety and with the following additional modifications. Then complete lines 5 and 6 above. These modifications are to be made only for purposes of filling out the Foreign Earned Income Tax Worksheet above.
 1. Reduce (but not below zero) the amount you would otherwise enter on line 3 of your Qualified Dividends and Capital Gain Tax Worksheet or line 9 of your Schedule D Tax Worksheet by your capital gain excess.
 2. Reduce (but not below zero) the amount you would otherwise enter on line 2 of your Qualified Dividends and Capital Gain Tax Worksheet or line 6 of your Schedule D Tax Worksheet by any of your capital gain excess not used in (1) above.
 3. Reduce (but not below zero) the amount on your Schedule D (Form 1040), line 18, by your capital gain excess.
 4. Include your capital gain excess as a loss on line 16 of your Unrecaptured Section 1250 Gain Worksheet in the Instructions for Schedule D (Form 1040).
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#w24811v12
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Qualified Dividends and Capital Gain Tax Worksheet—Line 44

  • See the earlier instructions for line 44 to see if you can use this worksheet to figure your tax.
  • If you do not have to file Schedule D and you received capital gain distributions, be sure you checked the box on line 13 of Form 1040.
1. Enter the amount from Form 1040, line 43. However, if you are filing Form 2555 or 2555-EZ (relating to foreign earned income), enter the amount from line 3 of the Foreign Earned Income Tax Worksheet 1.   
2. Enter the amount from Form 1040, line 9b*2.   
3. Are you filing Schedule D?*    
   box Yes.Enter the smaller of line 15 or 16 of Schedule D. If either line 15 or line 16 is blank or a loss, enter -0- Right brace3.   
   box No.Enter the amount from Form 1040, line 13    
4. Add lines 2 and 34.   
5. If filing Form 4952 (used to figure investment interest expense deduction), enter any amount from line 4g of that form. Otherwise, enter -0- 5.   
6. Subtract line 5 from line 4. If zero or less, enter -0-6.   
7. Subtract line 6 from line 1. If zero or less, enter -0-7.   
8. Enter:  
  $34,500 if single or married filing separately,      
  $69,000 if married filing jointly or qualifying widow(er),
$46,250 if head of household. 
Right brace 8.   
9. Enter the smaller of line 1 or line 89.   
10. Enter the smaller of line 7 or line 910.   
11. Subtract line 10 from line 9. This amount is taxed at 0%11.   
12. Enter the smaller of line 1 or line 612.   
13. Enter the amount from line 1113.   
14. Subtract line 13 from line 1214.   
15. Multiply line 14 by 15% (.15)15.  
16. Figure the tax on the amount on line 7. If the amount on line 7 is less than $100,000, use the Tax Table to figure this tax. If the amount on line 7 is $100,000 or more, use the Tax Computation Worksheet 16.  
17. Add lines 15 and 1617.  
18. Figure the tax on the amount on line 1. If the amount on line 1 is less than $100,000, use the Tax Table to figure this tax. If the amount on line 1 is $100,000 or more, use the Tax Computation Worksheet 18.  
19. Tax on all taxable income. Enter the smaller of line 17 or line 18. Also include this amount on Form 1040, line 44. If you are filing Form 2555 or 2555-EZ, do not enter this amount on Form 1040, line 44. Instead, enter it on line 4 of the Foreign Earned Income Tax Worksheet 19.  
*If you are filing Form 2555 or 2555-EZ, see the footnote in the Foreign Earned Income Tax Worksheet before completing this line.
 
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP1d9915fb

Line 45(p38)

rule
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP12284b06

Alternative Minimum Tax(p38)

rule
Use Form 6251 to figure the amount, if any, of your alternative minimum tax (AMT). Also see the Instructions for Form 6251 to see if you must file the form.
taxtip
An electronic AMT Assistant is available on IRS.gov to help you see if you should fill out Form 6251. Enter AMT Assistant in the search box.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP4b2cfbc0

Line 47(p38)

rule
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP5bf81199

Foreign Tax Credit(p38)

rule
If you paid income tax to a foreign country, you may be able to take this credit. Generally, you must complete and attach Form 1116 to do so.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP3548203d
Exception.(p38)
rule
You do not have to complete Form 1116 to take this credit if all of the following apply.
  1. All of your foreign source gross income was from interest and dividends and all of that income and the foreign tax paid on it were reported to you on Form 1099-INT, Form 1099-DIV, or Schedule K-1 (or substitute statement).
  2. The total of your foreign taxes was not more than $300 (not more than $600 if married filing jointly).
  3. You held the stock or bonds on which the dividends or interest were paid for at least 16 days and were not obligated to pay these amounts to someone else.
  4. You are not filing Form 4563 or excluding income from sources within Puerto Rico.
  5. All of your foreign taxes were:
    1. Legally owed and not eligible for a refund or reduced tax rate under a tax treaty, and
    2. Paid to countries that are recognized by the United States and do not support terrorism.
For more details on these requirements, see the Instructions for Form 1116.
Do you meet all five requirements above?
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP53ca8eca
  Yes.(p38)
rule
Enter on line 47 the smaller of (a) your total foreign taxes, or (b) the amount on Form 1040, line 44.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP24090066
  No.(p38)
rule
See Form 1116 to find out if you can take the credit and, if you can, if you have to file Form 1116.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP28fc33b0

Line 48(p38)

rule
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP7c0e2694

Credit for Child and Dependent Care Expenses(p38)

rule
You may be able to take this credit if you paid someone to care for:
For details, use TeleTax topic 602 or see Form 2441.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP4e703f2d

Line 49(p38)

rule
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP2a86001f

Education Credits(p38)

rule
If you (or your dependent) paid qualified expenses in 2011 for yourself, your spouse, or your dependent to enroll in or attend an eligible educational institution, you may be able to take an education credit. See Form 8863 for details. However, you cannot take an education credit if any of the following applies.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP3c39b88b

Line 50(p38)

rule
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP723be93e

Retirement Savings Contributions Credit (Saver's Credit)(p38)

rule
You may be able to take this credit if you, or your spouse if filing jointly, made (a) contributions, other than rollover contributions, to a traditional or Roth IRA; (b) elective deferrals to a 401(k) or 403(b) plan (including designated Roth contributions) or to a governmental 457, SEP, or SIMPLE plan; (c) voluntary employee contributions to a qualified retirement plan (including the federal Thrift Savings Plan); or (d) contributions to a 501(c)(18)(D) plan.
However, you cannot take the credit if either of the following applies.
  1. The amount on Form 1040, line 38, is more than $28,250 ($42,375 if head of household; $56,500 if married filing jointly).
  2. The person(s) who made the qualified contribution or elective deferral (a) was born after January 1, 1994, (b) is claimed as a dependent on someone else's 2011 tax return, or (c) was a student (defined next).
You were a student if during any part of 5 calendar months of 2011 you:
A school includes a technical, trade, or mechanical school. It does not include an on-the-job training course, correspondence school, or school offering courses only through the Internet.
For more details, use TeleTax topic 610 or see Form 8880.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP77825734

Line 51—Child Tax Credit(p39)

rule
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP3603ee55

(p39)

rule

Three Steps To Take the Child Tax Credit!

Step 1.Make sure you have a qualifying child for the child tax credit. Follow Steps 1 through 3 in the instructions for line 6c. If you do not have a qualifying child, you cannot claim the child tax credit.
Step 2.Make sure you checked the box on Form 1040, line 6c, column (4), for each qualifying child.
Step 3.Answer the questions below to see if you can use the Child Tax Credit Worksheet to figure your credit or if you must use Pub. 972.
 

 Questions   Who Must Use
Pub. 972(p39)

pub972
1.  Are you claiming any of the following credits?
  Mortgage interest credit, Form 8396.
  District of Columbia first-time homebuyer credit, Form 8859.
  Residential energy efficient property credit, Form 5695, Part II.
Yes. Stop.  You must use Pub. 972 to figure your child tax credit. You will also need the form(s) listed above for any credit(s) you are claiming.
No.  Continue...
2.  Are you excluding income from Puerto Rico or are you filing any of the following forms?
  Form 2555 or 2555-EZ (relating to foreign earned income).
  Form 4563 (exclusion of income for residents of American Samoa).
Yes. Stop.  You must use Pub. 972 to figure your credit.
No.  Use the Child Tax Credit Worksheet to figure your credit.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP6383144b
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP659a726d
Child Tax Credits Text DescriptionChild Tax Credits   
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP2761c2fa
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP0ada9004
Child Tax Credits (continued) Text DescriptionChild Tax Credits (continued)   
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP494970cf

Line 52(p42)

rule
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP77967821

Residential Energy Credits(p42)

rule
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP46da3249
Nonbusiness energy property credit.(p42)
rule
You may be able to take this credit by completing and attaching Form 5695 for any of the following improvements to your main home located in the United States in 2011 if they are new and meet certain requirements for energy efficiency.
You may also be able to take this credit for the cost of the following items if the items meet certain performance and quality standards.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP61d10e73
Residential energy efficient property credit.(p42)
rule
You may be able to take this credit by completing and attaching Form 5695 if you paid for any of the following during 2011.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP3fc0c7b6
Condos and co-ops.(p42)
rule
If you are a member of a condominium management association for a condominium you own or a tenant-stockholder in a cooperative housing corporation, you are treated as having paid your proportionate share of any costs of such association or corporation for purposes of these credits.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP6ec980e5
More details.(p42)
rule
For details, see Form 5695.
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP67dde3d2

Line 53(p42)

rule
taxmap/instr/i1040gi-011.htm#TXMP0236b63c

Other Credits(p42)

rule
Enter the total of the following credits on line 53 and check the appropriate box(es). Check all boxes that apply. If box c is checked, also enter the applicable form number. To find out if you can take the credit, see the form or publication indicated.