Members of the Maryland Association of Certified...


Members of the Maryland Association of Certified Public Accountants are answering readers' tax questions through April 15.

Q: What is my personal exemption worth in 1995?

A: Each exemption you claim on your 1995 tax return is worth $2,500, up $50 from 1994. Certain higher-income individuals may lose part or all of the $2,500 deduction if their adjusted gross income exceeds the threshold amount for their particular filing status. Phase out begins at $114,700 for single individuals; $172,050 for surviving spouses and marrieds filing jointly; $86,025 for marrieds filing separately; and $143,350 for heads of household.

Q: I recently moved to a different state in order to take a new job. What moving costs can I deduct?

A: First, to qualify for the moving expense deduction, your new job location must be at least 50 miles farther from your old residence than your previous job. In addition, it's not just how far you travel to your new job, but also how long you stay. The rules require that you be a full-time employee for at least 30 weeks during the first 12 months after arriving at the new location. You generally can deduct the cost of transporting yourself, your family and your belongings from your former residence to your new residence. However, the cost of meals incurred while traveling, temporary lodging and house-hunting expenses are no longer deductible.

The above advice is for general purposes only and is not intended as legal, accounting or tax advice. Specific situations may vary.

A joint service from The Sun and the Maryland Association of Certified Public Accountants can help you with your tax queries. Association members, all CPAs, will answer questions from readers until April 15.

To ask a tax question, call Sundial, The Sun's telephone information service at (410) 783-1800. Using a touch-tone phone, enter 6225 after you hear the greeting.

Callers are asked to leave their names and phone numbers should questions need to be clarified. Selected questions will be answered in the Business section. No questions will be answered by phone. Names and numbers will not be published.

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