IRS Issues Reminder to Educators for 2023 Expense Deductions

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With the new school year kicking off, the IRS recently issued a reminder to eligible educators to deduct out-of-pocket classroom expenses up to $300 when filing their federal income tax returns next year. Married taxpayers filing jointly with another eligible educator will benefit from a $600 limit. Eligible educators include all public and private school teachers, instructors, counselors, principals or aides who work in a school at least 900 hours per school year. This limit has not changed from last year, the first year the provision became subject to inflation adjustments. The limit will continue to rise in $50 increments in the future based on inflation adjustments.

What Can be Deducted?

Eligible educators may deduct the unreimbursed cost of the following items:

  • Books, supplies and other classroom materials
  • Equipment, such as computer equipment, software and similar services
  • COVID-19 protective equipment, including face masks, hand soap/sanitizer, plexiglass barriers and disinfectants, to name a few
  • Professional development courses to further the curriculum and/or students they teach
  • For a full list, the IRS recommends educators reference Publication 970, Tax Benefits for Education

It’s important to note that the cost of homeschooling or non-athletic equipment for physical education or health courses cannot be deducted. The IRS strongly recommends educators have a solid recordkeeping process in place, saving receipts, canceled checks and similar documentation.

Don’t Forget to Claim Educator Expenses for 2022!

If you qualify for a tax filing extension, disaster extension or are still working on a 2022 return, the rules for claiming the deduction are the same as they are for 2023. The extension filing deadline is Oct. 16, 2023, but you can avoid processing delays by filing before then. The IRS urges taxpayers to file electronically and select direct deposit for refunds. For more information, visit If you owe taxes, the IRS also recommends leveraging its free IRS Direct Pay service.If you have questions about deducting expenses for the 2023 (or 2022) tax year or to explore more individual tax planning strategies, be sure to contact Doeren Mayhew’s dedicated CPAs today.

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