Tax Talk Blog

The Tax Talk blog is a weekly blog published each Wednesday by the Indiana Department of Revenue (DOR). During tax season blogs are posted on both Mondays and Wednesdays. The blog discusses tax tips, DOR programs, and helpful information for tax preparers.

Donation Check-Offs Part 2: Military Family Relief Fund

February 19, 2018

Did you know you can contribute all or part of your state tax refund to three funds in Indiana? Well you can, with donation check offs. This is the second in a three-part series on donation check offs. Our first post was on the Indiana Nongame Wildlife Fund. Today, we’ll explore the second tax checkoff, the Military Family Relief Fund.

The Military Family Relief Fund offers taxpayers the opportunity fund emergency grants used by Hoosier military and veteran families. The funds can be utilized for documented needs such as food, housing, utilities, medical services, transportation, and other essential family support expenses which have become difficult to afford.

The Military Family Relief Fund has helped more than 2,000 families since its inception in 2007.

If you make a donation this year, you will be able to claim this year’s contribution as a deduction on next year’s federal itemized deduction schedule.

To donate, simply fill out Schedule IN-Donate with the name of the fund, Military Family Relief Fund, and the amount you wish to donate (the donation cannot be greater than the amount of your refund shown on Form IT-40, line 16). Don’t forget to enter 201 as the 3-digit designated code.

If you’re not receiving a state refund this year but would like to donate, you can make a donation directly by writing a check made payable to the Military Family Relief Fund and sending it to the Indiana Department of Veterans Affairs, 302 W. Washington Street, Suite E-120, Indianapolis, IN 46204.

For more information or to apply for a grant, please see the Indiana Department of Veteran’s Affairs.

DOR Fights Against Fraudulent Business Filings

February 14, 2018

Did you know that the Indiana Department of Revenue (DOR) can now audit small business owners suspected of claiming fake business expenses? Thanks to a partnership between DOR and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the fight to keep Indiana’s tax dollars within the state is a little bit easier.

Any business with an individual owner, known as sole proprietorship, may be required to fill out a 1040 Schedule C tax form as part of their federal income taxes. The Schedule C form lists all income, expenses, costs of goods sold and vehicle information, as a step to determine their federal gross income. The federal gross income is then reported to DOR when filing state individual income tax forms.

To keep funding for our public services, DOR evaluates any suspicious information or irregularities in the claimed business expenses and, if necessary, conducts an audit. Those most affected are mainly at-home businesses, which include more than 260,000 Schedule C filers living in Indiana. These businesses are advised to always keep detailed records of all purchases supporting legitimate business expenses—including all receipts for income earned, invoices and other important documentation supporting the Schedule C claims.

For more information on Schedule C documentation, visit the IRS website.

If customers have any questions regarding Schedule C tax filings, they are encouraged to call DOR Customer Service at 317-232-2240, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST.