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SCARSSCARS SCARS - Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc. A government registered crime victims' assistance & crime prevention nonprofit organization based in Miami, Florida, U.S.A. SCARS supports the victims of scams worldwide and through its partners in more than 60 countries around the world. Incorporated in 2015, its team has 30 years of continuous experience educating and supporting scam victims. Visit www.AgainstScams.org to learn more about SCARS.™ Guide: Deducting ScamsScams A Scam is a confidence trick - a crime -  is an attempt to defraud a person or group after first gaining their trust through deception. Scams or confidence tricks exploit victims using their credulity, naïveté, compassion, vanity, irresponsibility, or greed and exploiting that. Researchers have defined confidence tricks as "a distinctive species of fraudulent conduct ... intending to further voluntary exchanges that are not mutually beneficial", as they "benefit con operators ('con men' - criminals) at the expense of their victims (the 'marks')". A scam is a crime even if no money was lost. Form Your U.S. Income Tax

The following is not intended as Tax Advice and is provided for educational purposes only. Consult a professional tax preparer or tax attorney for all legal or professional advice about your taxes.

2018 UPDATE – PLEASE NOTE – Per the IRSIRS The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is the revenue & tax service of the United States federal government responsible for collecting taxes and administering the Internal Revenue Code (the main body of federal statutory tax law.) It is part of the Department of the Treasury and led by the Commissioner of Internal Revenue, who is appointed to a five-year term by the President of the United States. The duties of the IRS include providing tax assistance to taxpayers; pursuing and resolving instances of erroneous or fraudulent tax filings; and overseeing various benefits programs. Visit www.IRS.gov to learn more.: For tax years 2018 through 2025, the Act has suspended the itemized deduction for personal casualty and theft losses. Prior to this change in the law, personal casualty or theft losses were only deductible to the extent they exceeded $100 per casualty or theft event. However, if your loss occurred in 2017 or before you may be able to go back and Amend your tax returns – speak to a professional tax preparer for details.

Is It Possible To Recover Some Of Your Money Through Your Taxes? Maybe!

You can legally claim casualty and theft losses on personal property as itemized deductions on a United States Tax Return.

According to H&R Block you would do this on Form 4684 – Theft and Casualty Losses »

How To Do It?

You can claim casualty and theft losses on personal property as itemized deductions. Use Form 4684 to figure your losses and report them on Form 1040Schedule A.

You can only deduct losses not reimbursed or reimbursable by insurance or other means. You’ll need to subtract $100 from each casualty loss of personal property. The total of your casualty and theft losses on personal property must be more than 10% of your adjusted gross income (AGI). Otherwise, you can’t claim a deduction for that portion of the loss above the limit.

What’s a casualty?

A casualty is damage, destruction, or property loss resulting from one of these identifiable events:

  • Sudden event — swift, rather than gradual or progressive
  • Unexpected event — ordinarily unanticipated and unintended
  • Unusual event — not a day-to-day occurrence

Deductible losses

Deductible casualty losses can result from events like:

  • Car accidents (See Nondeductible losses below for exceptions.)
  • Earthquakes
  • Fires (See Nondeductible losses below for exceptions.)
  • Floods
  • Government-ordered demolition or relocation of a home that’s unsafe to use because of a disaster. A disaster is an event that occurred in an area the president declares eligible for federal assistance.
  • Mine cave-ins
  • Shipwrecks
  • Sonic booms
  • Storms, like hurricanes and tornadoes
  • Terrorist attacks
  • Vandalism
  • Volcanic eruptions
  • Loss on deposits when a bank or other financial institution becomes insolvent or bankrupt. If you incurred this type of loss, you can deduct it as one of these:
    • Casualty loss
    • Ordinary loss
    • Nonbusiness bad debt

However, after you make the choice, you can’t change it without permission from the IRS. To learn more, see Publication 547: Casualties, Disasters and Thefts at www.irs.gov.

Nondeductible losses

You can’t deduct a casualty loss if the damage or destruction is caused by any of these:

  • Accidentally breaking items, like glassware or china, under normal conditions
  • Damage a family pet does, unless the casualty requirements are met. Ex: Your new puppy, who’s not housebroken, damaged your antique Oriental rug. Since the damage isn’t unexpected or unusual, you can’t deduct the loss.
  • Fire you willfully set or you paid someone else to set
  • Car accident if your willful negligence or willful act caused it. The same is true if someone acting for you caused the accident.
  • Progressive deterioration if the damage results from a steadily operating cause or a normal process, like:
    • Steady weakening of a building due to normal wind and weather conditions
    • Deterioration and damage to a water heater that bursts. However, the damage to rugs and drapes caused by the burstin