Tax Law (Questions About Taxes)/Property Taxes



I have a question about property tax deduction. My wife and I are receiving a gift of equity on the house we live in which is owned by my wife's mother. Basically, the house is owned free and clear and she is signing it over to us. We have property taxes that are due next month. In general, can we write off our property taxes? They are approximately $7,000/ year. And if so, how much are we allowed to write off?


William couldn't take your question, but I can give you an answer.  

In order to deduct property taxes, two criteria must be met. 1. You must pay the taxes with our funds.  2. You must be legally liable for the tax debt.  It appears that the house is in the name of your mother-in-law; therefore it is not your legal liability.   Even if it were signed over to you now, the deduction must be prorated for the period in which you were the legal owner of the property.

Hope this helps.

John Stancil, CPA

Tax Law (Questions About Taxes)

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John Stancil, CPA


I can answer questions on personal income taxes, partnerships, and some corporate income taxes. I can deal with some state tax questions. Limited gift and estate tax questions. I am also familiar with ministerial and church tax reporting issues. I am Professor Emeritus at Florida Southern College. Sales taxes and property taxes are state and local issues so I am not likely be be able to give you an in depth answer on those types of taxes. I have maintained a CPA practice, specializing in tax, for over 35 years. I am a member of the National Association of Tax Professionals, The Florida Insititute of CPA's, The NCPE Fellowship. In addition I am a Certified Mentor for SCORE. Visit my website at I also offer seminars and consultations to churches and clergy on their tax issues at Also visit my blog, I am listed on Tax Connections at Prepare and file your own taxes at


I hold a doctorate in Accounting, and am a CPA. My certifications of CIA, CFM, and CMA are inactive. I passed all certification examinations on the first attempt, and received honorable mention for my scores on the CIA exam. I have operated a CPA firm for over 37 years and have taught accounting and tax at the college level for over 35 years.

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The CPA Journal, Florida CPA Today, Green Consumer, Green Business, Global Sustainability as a Business Imperative, Palmetto Review, NATP TaxPro Quarterly, Mustang Journal of Finance and Accounting.

DBA University of Memphis MBA University of Georgia BS in Accounting Mars Hill University

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