Gustav Tax Breaks

POSTED: Monday, March 30, 2009 - 5:15pm

UPDATED: Thursday, June 3, 2010 - 10:58pm

Hurricane Gustav has meant expensive repairs for many in or area, but as our Lauren Unger explains the storms could also mean a few breaks during tax time. There’s been changes to the tax laws when it comes to federally declared disasters and for some families we spoke with, it will make all the difference.

It’s been seven months since Hurricane Gustav, but the Luker family is still picking up the pieces. Stannie Luker says, “Three bedrooms and two baths were not damaged, everything else in the house suffered major damage.” Two trees cam crashing through the roof, turning their home of 42 years into a constant construction project. Besides the emotional toll, there’s the cost already upwards of $100,000, so the chance for extra cash from a tax deduction was a welcome surprise.

Dee Harris with the Internal Revenue Service says many people in Louisiana may be in the same boat, missing out on saving some cash. “We had a number of tax law changes this year. Hopefully people are taking advantage of those tax law changes.” Changes that deal with national disasters like Hurricanes Gustav and Ike. This year, you can claim losses from the hurricanes even if you use the simples W1040 form and there’s no income restrictions. You may see some of the deductible that you paid to your insurance company back. A few extra tax benefits at a time when many need it most.

Check with your own accountant or the IRS to see if the changes will apply to you. Click here for more information