Did The Bailout Do Anything?

The 700 billion dollar bailout bill… the jury’s still out on whether it works, but the idea is to provide relief to a banking system so overtaxed it was about to collapse. But this massive bill also has lots of other stuff: provisions that will definitely work to make your life less taxing.

Example? Shelter from the Alternative Minimum Tax. The bailout bill includes a one-year patch that could keep up to 23 million middle-class Americans from paying the AMT this year.

There’s also an extension of a law that makes forgiven mortgage debt non-taxable. Good news for those facing foreclosure.

The ability to deduct tuition and fees (worth up to $4,000) expired in 07. Now it’s back, courtesy of the bailout bill. As is the sales tax deduction, most useful for those who don’t pay state income taxes.

And there’s a credit of up to $500 for making your home more energy efficient, however, not for this year; that starts in 2009.

So while it’s true the fat cats may be the big beneficiaries of the bailout bill, it’s nice to know us little guys are at least getting a break or two.

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