Benjamin Franklin said, “In this world, nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.”. However, not all people believe that, apparently. With every tax return, many Americans submit odd and strange tax deductions and even stranger justifications to them. In this article, we will explore some of the strangest tax claims and you will be surprised that the IRS accepted some of them.
In 2001, a junkyard-owner in South Carolina listed the cost of cat food, approximately 300$, as a business expense. He claimed that cat food was the solution to keep rats and snakes off his junkyard. It attracted feral cats to scare the snakes and rats off the property. The IRS approved the deduction.
There is another case where pet expenses can be deducted from taxes and that’s when a pet becomes an internet sensation. If the pet activities can qualify to be considered a business and not a hobby, all related expenses can be deducted. The requirements can be found in a nine-part test provided by the IRS.
In 1971, a Chicago couple deducted expensive organic food as a medical expense. The couple, who had many severe allergies to chemically treated food, had to deduct around 3,000$ from their taxes as organic food costs. The US Tax Court allowed the deduction since the organic food was prescribed by more than one doctor.
In 1962, the IRS accepted a deduction a taxpayer made for a clarinet and clarinet lessons for his son. The tax deduction was only possible due to a doctor’s recommendation that the instrument can help the son and correct his overbite.
Swimming pools can be considered as accessories that are not vital for anyone to deduct them from their taxes. However, many American taxpayers have succeeded in deducting the costs of swimming pools from their taxes. When a swimming pool is recommended by a doctor or a specialist as a medical treatment to treat a medical condition, it can be deducted from your taxes and the IRS will approve it.
In 1988, an exotic dancer argued the US Tax Court that her 2,000$ breast implants were for business and had to be deducted from her taxes. According to USA Today, the court refused the dancer’s claim and considered the implants a personal expense. However, the dancer claimed that the surgery was a business expense that she had to make in order to boost her revenues. The court ended up by agreeing and that was not the only time such deduction was accepted.
In 1994, the same tax deduction was accepted in favor of self-employed exotic dancer Cynthia S Hess (AKA Chesty Love). According to Forbes, the IRS refused the dancer’s claim that her breast surgery was a deductible business expense. However, the Tax Court ruled in her favor and accepted the tax deduction.