The deadline for 2012 IRA contributions is April 15, 2013. The limit for total contributions to all IRAs generally is $5,000 ($6,000 if you were age 50 or older on Dec. 31, 2012). Any unused limit can’t be carried forward to make larger contributions in future years.

So if you haven’t already maxed out your 2012 limit, consider taking advantage of one of these three contribution options by April 15:

  1. Deductible traditional. If you and your spouse don’t participate in an employer-sponsored plan such as a 401(k) — or you do but your income doesn’t exceed certain limits — your traditional IRA contribution is fully deductible on your 2012 tax return. Account growth is tax-deferred; distributions are subject to income tax.
  2. Roth. Contributions to a Roth IRA aren’t deductible, but qualified distributions — including growth — are tax-free. Income-based limits may reduce or eliminate your ability to contribute, however.
  3. Nondeductible traditional. If your income is too high for you to fully deduct a traditional IRA contribution or make the maximum Roth IRA contribution, you may benefit from a nondeductible contribution to a traditional IRA. The account can still grow tax-deferred, and when you take distributions you’ll be taxed only on the growth. Alternatively, shortly after contributing, you may be able to convert the account to a Roth IRA with minimal tax liability.

To find out more about how to maximize your 2012 tax deduction by contributing to your IRA, contact our dedicated Tax Group, with CPAs in Troy, Mich., and Houston, Texas.