Nearly 90 Percent of Taxpayers Are Projected to Take the TCJA’s Expanded Standard Deduction

As the House of Representatives this week considers a bill that would make the individual reforms of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) permanent, one important change to keep in mind is the increased standard deduction. The TCJA lowered individual income tax rates, and nearly doubled the standard deduction. Now, nearly 29 million more households will be better off taking the standard deduction instead of itemizing deductions, meaning they will have a much simpler tax filing process. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act increased the standard deduction from $6,500 to $12,000 for single filers and $13,000 to $24,000 for taxpayers who are married filing jointly. Thus, millions of households will no longer need to go through the complex process of itemizing their deductions. The Joint Committee on Taxation estimates that the number of filers who itemize will fall from 46.5 million in 2017 to just over 18 million in 2018, meaning that about 88 percent of the 150 million households that file…

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