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What is Tax Relief?

Nicole Madison
Updated Jan 28, 2024
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The term tax relief refers to tax breaks and write-offs that reduce the amount of tax due or otherwise provide concessions for taxpayers. It can be granted on a local, state, or federal level. In the United States, however, the term is most often used in conjunction with federal taxes.

The government provides tax relief to its citizens, and these deductions and write-offs are generally targeted towards individuals or businesses in need of financial breaks. Such concessions are usually not intended for multi-million dollar corporations or billionaires.

There are many reasons why an individual might need or desire relief from taxes. An individual might be unable to pay all the taxes imposed on him or her, and someone with a lower income may find paying taxes in their entirety or by a certain deadline a hardship. There are a wide variety of tax breaks and deductions available, but to take advantage of a particular relief program, an individual must meet specific social and financial requirements.

Often, tax relief is granted to individuals who have been victims of a disaster. For example, a taxpayer who has lost a home, business, job, or something else of value as the result of a hurricane or tropical storm may be eligible. In the United States, the US president must declare the area hit by such a storm a disaster area before the person can claim such relief.

There are also tax-break programs available in many places that may help to reduce the tax obligation of homeowners, both on a regional and national basis. In fact, some countries, like Ireland, offer tax relief to individuals who rent the property in which they live.

It isn't necessary for a person to suffer through a natural disaster or own a home to benefit from tax relief. There are tax-break programs for everyone from the elderly and the disabled to the working class and students. Most government tax agencies have information about the various types of tax breaks available. Additionally, a good deal of this information can be found online.

Thanks to relief plans, many individuals receive larger tax returns than they could without such concessions. Some tax breaks make it possible for low-income citizens to get returns, even if they pay little or no income taxes. Tax concessions can help to boost a country’s economy by helping its citizens to prosper. With less money to pay in taxes, individuals may have more money to pay for education, purchase homes, and invest.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Nicole Madison
By Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison's love for learning inspires her work as a WiseGeek writer, where she focuses on topics like homeschooling, parenting, health, science, and business. Her passion for knowledge is evident in the well-researched and informative articles she authors. As a mother of four, Nicole balances work with quality family time activities such as reading, camping, and beach trips.
Discussion Comments
By Crispety — On Jan 07, 2011

Icecream17-I know that there is a tax relief lawyer by the name of Roni Deutch that allows advertises tax relief services.

Usually her clients are people that are overwhelmed by their tax burden. Sometimes the IRS will offer a payment plan for those that are behind on their taxes. There are firms that will settle tax debt for their clients and they usually get a percentage of the settlements.

By icecream17 — On Jan 05, 2011

Sunny27-I remember that. I think that the tax relief act signed into law by Obama was a necessary measure in order to keep the economy on stable footing.

This tax relief help should have been permanent because it would allow more stability for businesses. Businesses often perform strategic planning that is often yields a five or ten year outlook.

The fact that at least the next two years offers no change in the tax base in however encouraging and should stabilize unemployment.

There really needs to be more corporate tax relief in order to really make a dent in unemployment.

When businesses have more money to spend they will expand their businesses and hire more people. If they are afraid of increased governmental regulations that will cost them more, they will hesitate to hire anyone even if they really need the help.

By Sunny27 — On Jan 02, 2011

Sometimes the federal government will offer IRS tax relief in the form of an additional government rebate.

This is known as a stimulus package that is offered to Americans in order to stimulate the economy. President George W. Bush offered a $1500 rebate to American families in order to stimulate the economy after the declines due to the September 11th terrorist attacks.

Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison's love for learning inspires her work as a WiseGeek writer, where she focuses on topics like...
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