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I need to know the deductible portion of my Washington State vehicle registration fee. I can deduct the RTA portion, but how do I identify the vehicle value portion?

Amts on Registration include Filing, RTA Tax, Service Fee, Gwt/Veh wt, Other ...
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I need to know the deductible portion of my Washington State vehicle registration fee. I can deduct the RTA portion, but how do I identify the vehicle value portion?

As you correctly identify in your question, in the State of Washington, the only portion of your vehicle registration charge that is tax deductible (on Form 1040 Schedule A as an itemized deduction) is the amount shown on your registration statement for the RTA (Regional Transit Authority) tax.  Only residents of King, Pierce, and Snohomish counties, and who live within the Sound Transit District, will have an RTA tax.  If you do not pay RTA taxes, then you do not have a tax deductible portion of vehicle registration fees for Washington vehicles.

However, it is the whole of the RTA tax amount, and not some portion of the RTA tax that is deductible.  Thus, you don't need to try and break out or separate in any way the portion of the RTA tax that is underpinned or relies upon the value of the vehicle . . . because the entirety of the RTA tax is calculated based on vehicle value.  Perhaps that's the point that TurboTax, and other reference materials, doesn't make explicitly clear.


For more information on the RTA itself, you may visit the following government webpage:

http://www.dol.wa.gov/vehicleregistration/rta.html


Again, though, this deduction is only applicable if your vehicle registration address is in King, Pierce, or Snohomish counties.  If you live there, and in the Sound Transit District as well, then and only then will you have an RTA tax.

The legal reasoning for deducting the RTA tax is as follows.  The IRS only allows that portion of a state registration fee that is based on the value of the vehicle to be included toward your other itemized deductions.  Any flat fee portion doesn't count.  This is why there are some 20+ states whose residents can potentially benefit from the deduction; but the remainder cannot:  their states do not charge vehicle registration fees by value, and instead charge flat fees only.

Finally, it is also important to keep in mind that you (or anyone claiming this deduction) may or may not actually see any net tax benefit from including these items on your tax return.  The reason for this is that you must have enough itemized deductions (in total) to exceed the standard deduction available to all taxpayers.  Since more than 2 in 3 taxpayers do not, most people end up taking the (more valuable) standard deduction, rather than itemizing deductions.  If you input all your data carefully, however, the TurboTax software will make that determination for you.

Thank you for asking this question.

View solution in original post

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New Member

I need to know the deductible portion of my Washington State vehicle registration fee. I can deduct the RTA portion, but how do I identify the vehicle value portion?

As you correctly identify in your question, in the State of Washington, the only portion of your vehicle registration charge that is tax deductible (on Form 1040 Schedule A as an itemized deduction) is the amount shown on your registration statement for the RTA (Regional Transit Authority) tax.  Only residents of King, Pierce, and Snohomish counties, and who live within the Sound Transit District, will have an RTA tax.  If you do not pay RTA taxes, then you do not have a tax deductible portion of vehicle registration fees for Washington vehicles.

However, it is the whole of the RTA tax amount, and not some portion of the RTA tax that is deductible.  Thus, you don't need to try and break out or separate in any way the portion of the RTA tax that is underpinned or relies upon the value of the vehicle . . . because the entirety of the RTA tax is calculated based on vehicle value.  Perhaps that's the point that TurboTax, and other reference materials, doesn't make explicitly clear.


For more information on the RTA itself, you may visit the following government webpage:

http://www.dol.wa.gov/vehicleregistration/rta.html


Again, though, this deduction is only applicable if your vehicle registration address is in King, Pierce, or Snohomish counties.  If you live there, and in the Sound Transit District as well, then and only then will you have an RTA tax.

The legal reasoning for deducting the RTA tax is as follows.  The IRS only allows that portion of a state registration fee that is based on the value of the vehicle to be included toward your other itemized deductions.  Any flat fee portion doesn't count.  This is why there are some 20+ states whose residents can potentially benefit from the deduction; but the remainder cannot:  their states do not charge vehicle registration fees by value, and instead charge flat fees only.

Finally, it is also important to keep in mind that you (or anyone claiming this deduction) may or may not actually see any net tax benefit from including these items on your tax return.  The reason for this is that you must have enough itemized deductions (in total) to exceed the standard deduction available to all taxpayers.  Since more than 2 in 3 taxpayers do not, most people end up taking the (more valuable) standard deduction, rather than itemizing deductions.  If you input all your data carefully, however, the TurboTax software will make that determination for you.

Thank you for asking this question.

View solution in original post

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New Member

I need to know the deductible portion of my Washington State vehicle registration fee. I can deduct the RTA portion, but how do I identify the vehicle value portion?

Thanks!
Highlighted
New Member

I need to know the deductible portion of my Washington State vehicle registration fee. I can deduct the RTA portion, but how do I identify the vehicle value portion?

Do I have to pay RTA tax if I purchased a car in those counties, but live in a different county?

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