As of January 23, 2018, application forms for the Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program are available for eligible Pennsylvanians to begin claiming rebates on property taxes or rent paid in 2017, Revenue Secretary Dan Hassell announced. The deadline to apply for a rebate is June 30, 2018. “Last year this program helped more than half a million seniors and people with disabilities save on the rent or property taxes they paid the previous year,” Hassell said. “I encourage everyone who is eligible to apply.” Applicants may obtain Property Tax/Rent Rebate claim forms (PA-1000) and related information on the Department of Revenue’s website or by calling 1-888-222-9190. It is free to apply for a rebate, and free filing help is available at hundreds of locations across the commonwealth, including at Department of Revenue district offices, local Area Agencies on Aging, senior community centers and state legislators’ offices. Claimants must reapply for rebates every year because rebates are based on annual income and property taxes or rent paid in each year. Spouses, personal representatives or estates may file rebate claims on behalf of claimants who lived at least one day in 2017 and meet all other eligibility criteria. Rebates will be distributed beginning July 1, as required by law. More than $259 million in property tax and rent rebates have been sent to more than 542,000 homeowners and renters across the state for taxes and rent paid in 2016. About the Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program The rebate program benefits eligible Pennsylvanians age 65 and older; widows and widowers age 50 and older; and people with disabilities age 18 and older. The income limit is $35,000 a year for homeowners and $15,000 annually for renters, and half of Social Security income is excluded. The maximum standard rebate is $650, but supplemental rebates for certain qualifying homeowners can boost rebates to $975. The Department of Revenue automatically calculates supplemental rebates for qualifying homeowners. Since its inception in 1971, more than $6.7 billion has been paid to qualified applicants through the Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program. The program is funded by the Pennsylvania Lottery and revenue from slots gaming.
Announcement per PA Department of Revenue
The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act made two changes to business meals and entertainment expenses, effective for amounts incurred or paid after Dec. 31, 2017. The first change disallows deductions for business-related entertainment expenses. (Under prior law, a taxpayer could deduct 50% of such expenses.) In addition, the 50% limit on the deductibility of business meals is expanded to meals provided through an in-house cafeteria or on the employer’s premises (previously, they were 100% deductible). Contact us if you have questions about your business.
If you pay state and/or local income tax estimates, you may want to consider making those payments before the end of the year rather than waiting until they are due in January 2018. The proposed tax bills in both the House and Senate currently eliminate state and local income tax payments as itemized deductions so it may be worthwhile to pay them in 2017 when they are still deductible. Congress still has a long way to go, and these provisions may change, but we feel it is worth considering being proactive in case tax law changes moving forward.