2021 – 2022 Senior Citizen State of Connecticut and Federal Tax Deductions

For senior citizens, there are a variety of tax deductions that you may be able to claim on both your Connecticut and Federal Tax Filings. For those who are filing their taxes, looking at the overall tax snapshot of your state and federal taxes is important for perspective. To ensure that you’re getting the most out of your money, begin by looking at your income taxes and state sales tax rate, then progressing to social security, retirement accounts, property, and additional exemptions, deductions, refunds, and credits that you may be eligible for to give you the biggest possible refund.

Social Security Benefit Adjustment

Social Security recipients who pay federal income tax on their benefits may be able to reduce the amount of benefits taxable for Connecticut income tax purposes by completing the Social Security Benefit. If allowable through filing, recipients are not subject to Connecticut income tax on federally taxable Social Security benefits. In 2020, Retirees who are making $75K or less and couples making $100k or less per year are now fully exempt from state income tax on Social Security benefits. The federal filing status includes those who are:

  • Single or married filing separately and your federal adjusted gross income as reported on Line 1 of your Connecticut income tax return is less than $75,000; or
  • Married filing jointly, qualifying widow(er), or head of household and your federal adjusted gross income as reported on Line 1 of your Connecticut income tax return is less than $100,000.
  • To learn more about this program, visit the State of Connecticut’s Department of Revenue Services, here.

Source: State of Connecticut Department of Revenue Services – Taxability of Social Security benefits for Connecticut Income Tax Purposes

Connecticut Property Tax Advantages, Benefits, Deductions, and Exemptions for Seniors 65 and Older

Circuit Breaker – Property Tax Elderly/Disabled Tax Relief Program

State law provides a property tax credit program for Connecticut owners in residence of real property, who are elderly (65 and over) or totally disabled, and whose annual incomes do not exceed certain limits. The credit amount is calculated by the local assessor and applied by the tax collector to the applicant’s real property tax bill. The amount of the credit that may be granted is up to $1,250 for married couples and $1,000 for single persons. For a full Q&A booklet regarding this tax credit for 2021 (2020 Program Year), click here.

Source: State of Connecticut – Office of Policy Management – Homeowners’ – Elderly/Disabled (Circuit Breaker) Tax Relief Program

Zero Property Tax in Active Adult Community Living and Senior Retirement Communities

For those 55+ years of age and above, living in an active adult community and senior retirement community is an excellent option. Depending on the home agreement or contract, residents may be able to pay zero property tax on that residence. In addition to zero property tax, some seniors will find that it is cheaper to live in a retirement community after comparing monthly expenditures (home payment, home maintenance and repairs, lawn maintenance, dining/groceries, electricity, water, transportation, internet, etc.).

Top-Rated Senior Living in Connecticut

One of the top-rated and award-winning senior living communities in the State of Connecticut is Evergreen Woods, located in North Branford. The community offers a wide variety of services including 55+ active adult living, independent living, assisted living, skilled nursing and senior rehabilitation. The benefit of living in a community like Evergreen Woods is that should your needs change, there is no need to relocate as you’ll be at home in a community of friends and have easy access to the care you require in your own home. To learn more about Evergreen Woods, visit their website here.

Connecticut State Income Tax Rate

The State of Connecticut does not have a standard income tax deduction. Rates are based on a sliding scale bracket and the rates range from as low as 3% to 6.99% based on income.

  • 3% – For individuals whose income is between $0 – $10,000 or those who are married filing jointly whose income is between $0-$20,000.
  • 6.99% – For individuals whose ​​income is $500,001 or more, and those who are married filing jointly whose income is $1,000,001 or more.

While the state doesn’t have a standard deduction, the personal exemption is $15,000 for single taxpayers and $24,000 for married couples. However, personal exemptions are phased out when adjusted gross income exceeds $30,000 for a single taxpayer or $48,000 for married joint filers.

Source: Bankrate – Connecticut State Taxes – 2020-2021 and Connecticut Department of Revenue – Form CT-1040 TCS

Low State and Local Sales Tax

There is only one statewide sales and use tax in Connecticut at the rate of 6.35%, which is the United States average state sales tax rate. The sales tax applies to the retail sale, lease, or rental of most goods and taxable services. There are no additional sales taxes imposed by local jurisdictions within the state. However there are exceptions to this rule which can be found on the State of Connecticut’s Department of Revenues Services website, here. Items that are exempt from sales and use taxes include some groceries and food products, internet access services, medical goods and equipment, and more. For the full list of items that are exempt from sales and use taxes in Connecticut, click here.

State of Connecticut and Federal Tax Resources:

United States Internal Revenue Service (IRS)
State of Connecticut Official Website
Connecticut Department of Revenue Services
State of Connecticut – Office of Policy Management
State of Connecticut – Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV)
List of Cities and Towns (with official website links) in Connecticut
United States Department of the Treasury

Federal Tax Deductions for Seniors

For those who are 65 and older, in addition to state and local tax deductions there are federal tax deductions and exclusions that may apply to your yearly tax filing. Some of the top deductions are listed below:

What is the Standard Federal Tax Deduction for Seniors Over 65?

The standard tax deduction is a set dollar amount that reduces your overall taxable income. This can vary based on your filing status, age, whether you are blind, or if another taxpayer can claim you as a dependent. In 2021 and 2022, the IRS increased the standard deduction for seniors who are 65 and over. The information for both years can be found below:

2021 Senior Citizen Standard Income Tax Deduction

In the 2021 tax year (filed in 2022), the standard deduction is $12,550 for Single filers and Married Filing Separately, $25,100 for Married Filing Jointly and Surviving Spouses, and $18,800 for the Head of Household.

For those 65 years of age or legally blind, the standard deduction was increased in 2021 to $1,700 for Single filers or Head of Household, and $1,350 (per person) for married filing jointly, married filing separately, and Surviving Spouses.

2021 Standard Tax Deduction for Seniors Over 65 Years of Age with the Standard Deduction Increase*:

Filing Status2021 Standard Deduction Under 65 Years of Age2021 Additional Standard Deduction Over 65 Years of Age2021 Total Standard Deduction Over 65 Years of Age*
Single (Unmarried and not a Surviving Spouse)$12,550$1,700= $14,250
Married Filing Separately$12,550$1,350= $13,900
Married Filing Jointly$25,100$1,350 + $1,350 (One deduction for each spouse)= $27,800
Surviving Spouses$25,100$2,700= $27,800
Head of Household$18,800$1,700= $20,500

* If you are legally blind, there are additional deductions that apply. Check IRS Form 1040 or 1040A and speak with your licensed tax professional to learn more.

To check your 2021 Standard Deduction, visit the Interactive Tax Assistant (ITA) at IRS.gov

2022 Senior Citizen Standard Income Tax Deduction

In the 2022 tax year (filed in 2023), the standard deduction is $12,950 for Single Filers and Married Filing Separately, $25,900 for Married Filing Jointly and Surviving Spouses, and $19,400 for the Head of Household.

For those 65 years of age or legally blind, the standard deduction was increased in 2022 to $1,750 for Single filers or Head of Household, and $1,400 for Married Filing Jointly, Married Filing Separately, and Surviving Spouses.

2022 Standard Tax Deduction for Seniors Over 65 Years of Age with the Standard Deduction Increase*:

Filing Status2022 Standard Deduction Under 65 Years of Age2022 Additional Standard Deduction Over 65 Years of Age2022 Total Standard Deduction Over 65 Years of Age*
Single (Unmarried and not a Surviving Spouse)$12,950$1,750= $14,700
Married Filing Separately$12,950$1,400= $14,350
Married Filing Jointly$25,900$1,400 + $1,400 (One deduction for each spouse)= $28,700
Surviving Spouses$25,900$2,800= $28,700
Head of Household$19,400$1,750= $21,150

* If you are legally blind, there are additional deductions that apply. Check IRS Form 1040 or 1040A and speak with your licensed tax professional to learn more.

Each situation is different, but if the standard deduction is less than your itemized deductions, it’s better to itemize and save money. If your standard deduction is more than your itemized deductions, it’s better to opt for the standard deduction. Speak with your licensed tax professional to determine which deduction is correct for you.

Medical and Dental Federal Tax Deductions

For retirees, medical, healthcare, and dental expenses are often one of the largest expenses. According to IRS.gov, if you itemize your deductions for a taxable year on Schedule A (Form 1040 – Itemized Deductions), you may be able to deduct expenses you paid that year for medical and dental care for yourself, your spouse, and your dependents. You may deduct only the amount of your total medical expenses that exceed 7.5% of your adjusted gross income. You figure the amount you’re allowed to deduct on Schedule A (Form 1040). Medical care expenses include payments for the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease, or payments for treatments affecting any structure or function of the body.These deductions include prescription drugs, nursing home care, long-term care insurance premiums, insurance premiums (including Medicare), and additional out-of-pocket healthcare expenses. For a full list of acceptable tax deductions, visit IRS.gov’s Medical and Dental Expenses here.

Is Assisted Living Tax Deductible?

For those who are in an assisted living retirement community, there may be medical tax deductions that are associated with the care that is received during that tax year.

Residents of assisted living may be entitled to deduct as a medical expense a portion of the monthly service fees and entrance fees which represent medical care in the year paid. The Internal Revenue Code (IRS) does not contain detailed guidance on how to compute this, therefore each resident should consult their licensed tax professional as to the ultimate deduction and disclosure decisions based on their individual situation.

Monthly service fees paid for assisted living and skilled nursing care may be deducted as medical expenses except those charges for non-medical items such as beauty shop charges or guest meals. This treatment is allowable provided that residents require the services, are chronically ill and the services are provided under a plan of care prescribed by a licensed health care practitioner (IRC Section 7702B(c)).

A resident must meet certain criteria to be eligible for a 100% medical deduction for monthly services fees paid. The resident must be unable to perform, without substantial assistance from another individual, at least two activities of daily living for a period of at least 90 days, or the resident requires substantial supervision to protect their health and safety due to severe cognitive impairment. Activities of daily living include eating, toileting, transferring, bathing, dressing, and continence. The services must also be provided pursuant to a plan of care prescribed by a licensed health care practitioner.

For a full list of acceptable tax deductions, visit IRS.gov’s Medical and Dental Expenses here.

Federal Tax Resources:

United States Internal Revenue Service (IRS)
United States Department of the Treasury
IRS Standard Deduction Calculator
IRS Medical and Dental Expenses
Disclaimer: The information above should function as a starting point for your tax research but should not be substituted for direct advice from a licensed tax professional. State and Federal taxes are ever-changing and this list may not be current or up to date with the current tax laws, deductions, relief programs, rebates, requirements, etc. Additional tax deductions, credits, and relief programs may be available depending on your town and county of residence within the State of Connecticut. Consult with your local municipality’s tax department, the Connecticut Department of Revenue, U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and your licensed tax professional to learn more about programs that are available for the current tax year.