Many Missourians age 65 or older wonder if they qualify for the state's low income circuit breaker tax credit for property tax relief.
Callaway County Assessor Dan Roe said taxpayers should be aware that they must pay all real estate taxes due to the county even if they are eligible for the state circuit breaker tax credit.
"Senior citizens and those individuals who are 100 percent disabled must pay their county property taxes. But they can receive credit for the taxes paid, or a portion of their rent, through the state income tax structure," Roe said.
The circuit breaker state income tax credit is available only to eligible low-income Missourians age 65 or older and to Missourians who are 100 percent disabled.
The program gives them credit on their state income tax returns for a portion of the real estate taxes or rent they have paid for the year.
The credit is for a maximum of $740 for renters and $1,100 for people who owned and occupied their home.
The circuit breaker tax credit is based on the amount of real estate taxes or rent paid and total household income, both taxable and nontaxable.
Missourians who rent from a facility that does not pay property taxes are not eligible for Missouri's circuit breaker tax relief. That includes Missourians who live in low-income housing units and some nursing homes.
To be eligible for the circuit breaker state tax credit, a single person over age 65 paying rent to someone who paid real estate taxes or a person who is 100 percent disabled must have total household income of less than $27,500. A married couple over age 65 paying rent to someone who paid real estate taxes is not eligible for the tax credit if total household annual income is more than $29,500.
A single person with total household income of less than $30,000 or a married couple with less total household income of less than $34,000 who owned and lived in a home the entire year and paid local real estate taxes is eligible for the circuit breaker tax credit.
Surviving spouse social security benefit recipients can qualify beginning at age 60.
Missourians who think they might qualify or have questions about the program should contact the Missouri Department of Revenue at 573-751-3505 or check the department's website at http://dor.mo.gov/personal/ptc/.