Families should keep receipts when back-to-school shopping - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Families should keep receipts when back-to-school shopping

(Source: MGN Online) (Source: MGN Online)
Most people will save the date for this weekend’s tax holiday that exempts school items from the state’s four percent sales tax.

Though, it’s less likely that families will keep track of those purchases for another money saving option. Some school items also qualify for state income tax deductions.

“Louisiana allows a school expense deduction, if your child or dependent is in elementary or secondary school,” said CPA, David Desormeaux.

What expenses qualify depends on what type of school the child is attending.

Families with children in private school are eligible for deductions.

“The types of expenses that are allowed would be tuition, fees, textbooks, uniforms and supplies as required by the school,” said Desormeaux.

For public schools, the deductions cannot cap $5,000 per student.

“We do require that they wear a polo and khaki pants, and that is a large expense for parents, so fortunately, in the state you can recoup some of those costs,” said Public Information Officer for Calcasieu Parish School Board, Kirby Smith.

Books and other supplies count, too. Although, in order to take advantage of the break the school must require the items be purchased.

“Say, a laptop is required at one school but not at another. Then, it would be deductible only for the student going to the school where it's required,” said Desormeaux.

In Calcasieu Parish, most elementary school supply lists can be found online, on the school board App, or at local retailers.

“Our high schools do not have lists online or at the schools, but the students should report to school with a binder, paper, pens, just to get them through the day and then they'll get the requirements for what they need for specific classes,” said Smith.

Lastly, for families who home-school their children, the deduction rate is similar to public schools.

“They don't usually have tuition or that sort of thing so it's textbooks or curriculum required for that program,” said Desormeaux.

Proving a good track record while back-to-school shopping, can help families in the long run.

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