Disclosure: We scrutinize our research, ratings and reviews using strict editorial integrity. In full transparency, this site may receive compensation from partners listed through affiliate partnerships, though this does not affect our ratings. Learn more about how we make money by visiting our advertiser disclosure.

Each year, you familiarize yourself with some basic tax provisions that you know you’ll encounter each year when you file your tax return. Which federal tax bracket you’re in is one. Your filing status is another. And don’t forget the most popular tax deduction of them all—your standard deduction.

About 90% of all taxpayers claim the standard deduction on their federal tax return (as opposed to itemizing deductions)—but the standard deduction amounts are changed every year to account for inflation. Therefore, you’ll want to know the standard deduction amounts for the current tax year.

Plus, the standard deduction isn’t the same for everyone. How much you can claim is primarily based on your filing status. However, your age, dependency status, and even your eyesight can also impact your standard deduction amount. So can being the victim of a natural disaster.

But don’t worry about all the various factors … I’ll spell everything out so it’s clear how much lower your taxable income will be when you file your 2024 tax return next year. I’ll also include the 2023 amounts for comparison to see how they looked last year.

 

Related: What Tax Bracket Are You In?

How the Standard Deduction Works


tax deduction calculator screen
DepositPhotos

When working on your income taxes, the first thing you need to do is calculate your federal adjusted gross income, or AGI. That figure includes all your taxable income, minus any “above-the-line” tax deductions you’re entitled to claim (i.e., deductions taken from your gross income to arrive at your adjusted gross income).

The next step is to subtract either your standard deduction or itemized deductions from your adjusted gross income to arrive at your taxable income. When deciding between the standard deduction and itemized deductions, pick whichever one is higher. (Small business owners and certain other people might also be allowed to deduct up to 20% of their qualified business income.) Once you know your taxable income, calculate the tax due for that dollar amount. If you can claim any tax credits or made previous tax payments, they are subtracted from the tax due.

The higher your standard deduction (or itemized deductions), the lower your taxable income. The lower your taxable income, the lower your tax bill. And if your standard tax deduction is large enough to bring your taxable income down to a lower tax bracket, the impact can be even greater.

We start first with the 2023 standard deduction amount and proceed to compare it with the 2024 amounts after.

Related: 11 Education Tax Credits and Deductions

2023 Standard Deduction Amounts


tax 2023 calculator screen
DepositPhotos

Now that you understand the importance of the standard deduction, let’s take a look at the actual standard deduction amounts for the 2023 tax year. (For most people, tax returns for the 2023 tax year were due April 15, 2024.)

The basic standard deduction, which most people used for their 2023 return, is based on your filing status, as shown in the table below.

Filing Status2023 Standard Deduction
Single$13,850
Married Filing Jointly$27,700
Married Filing Separately$13,850
Head of Household$20,800
Qualifying Surviving Spouse$27,700

2023 Standard Deductions for Dependents

If you can be claimed as a dependent on someone else’s tax return, your 2023 standard deduction was generally limited to the greater of:

  • $1,250
  • Your earned income plus $400 (but not more than the applicable basic standard deduction amount)

Earned income includes salaries, wages, tips, professional fees, and other compensation for work. It also includes any part of a taxable scholarship or fellowship grant.

Related: States That Tax Social Security Benefits

2023 Additional Standard Deductions for Age and/or Blindness

If you’re at least 65 years old or considered legally blind at the end of 2023, you’re entitled to an additional standard deduction for the 2023 tax year in the following dollar amount:

  • $1,500 for married couples filing jointly, married taxpayers filing separately, and surviving spouses
  • $1,850 for single and head-of-household filers

For married couples who file jointly, both spouses get an additional standard deduction for being at least 65 years old or blind. If you or your spouse is both 65 or older and blind, then the additional deduction for that person is doubled.

If you’re married but filing a separate return, your spouse is eligible for the additional standard deduction on your return only if he or she has no income, isn’t filing a return, and can’t be claimed as a dependent on someone else’s tax return for the tax year. The additional deduction is also doubled for separate filers for either qualifying spouse who is both 65 or older and blind.

You can use the table below to determine your 2023 standard deduction if you or your spouse will be either 65 or older or blind by the end of 2023.

Filing Status65 and/or Blind2023 Standard Deduction
Single65 or Blind$15,700
65 and Blind$17,550
Married Filing JointlyOne Spouse 65 or Blind$29,200
One Spouse 65 and Blind$30,700
One Spouse 65 or Blind; Other Spouse 65 or Blind$30,700
One Spouse 65 and Blind; Other Spouse 65 or Blind$32,200
Both Spouses 65 and Blind$33,700
Married Filing SeparatelyOne Spouse 65 or Blind$15,350
One Spouse 65 and Blind$16,850
One Spouse 65 or Blind; Other Spouse 65 or Blind$16,850
One Spouse 65 and Blind; Other Spouse 65 or Blind$18,350
Both Spouses 65 and Blind$19,850
Head of Household65 or Blind$22,650
65 and Blind$24,500
Qualifying Surviving Spouse65 or Blind$29,200
65 and Blind$30,700

WealthUp Tip: If you’re not totally blind (i.e., only partially blind) and claim the additional standard deduction for blindness, the IRS requires a statement from an eye doctor certifying that you (1) can’t see better than 20/200 in the better eye with glasses or contact lenses, or (2) your field of vision is 20 degrees or less. The statement should also note if your vision isn’t likely to improve beyond these limits. If your vision can be corrected beyond these limits only by contact lenses that you can wear only briefly because of pain, infection, or ulcers, you can use the standard deduction for blindness if you otherwise qualify.

Related: IRS Delays 1099-K Rules: What PayPal, Venmo, StubHub Users Need to Know

2024 Standard Deduction Amounts


tax brackets coins blocks

If you’re looking ahead to your 2024 taxes—as wise taxpayers should—you’ll want to check on your 2024 standard deduction. (You should look at the 2024 tax brackets, too.) The basic standard deduction amounts for 2024 are shown in the following table.

Filing Status2024 Standard Deduction
Single$14,600
Married Filing Jointly$29,200
Married Filing Separately$14,600
Head of Household$21,900
Qualifying Surviving Spouse$29,200

For dependents, the 2024 standard deduction is limited to the greater of:

  • $1,300
  • Earned income plus $450 (again, not more than the applicable basic standard deduction amount)

If you’re at least 65 years old or blind at the end of 2024, the additional standard deduction for the 2024 tax year is:

  • $1,550 for married couples filing jointly, married taxpayers filing separately, and surviving spouses
  • $1,950 for single and head-of-household filers

So, for 2024, the additional standard deductions for people who are either 65 or older or blind at the end of the year are as shown in the following table.

Filing Status65 and/or Blind2024 Standard Deduction
Single65 or Blind$16,550
65 and Blind$18,500
Married Filing JointlyOne Spouse 65 or Blind$30,750
One Spouse 65 and Blind$32,300
One Spouse 65 or Blind; Other Spouse 65 or Blind$32,300
One Spouse 65 and Blind; Other Spouse 65 or Blind$33,850
Both Spouses 65 and Blind$35,400
Married Filing SeparatelyOne Spouse 65 or Blind$16,150
One Spouse 65 and Blind$17,700
One Spouse 65 or Blind; Other Spouse 65 or Blind$17,700
One Spouse 65 and Blind; Other Spouse 65 or Blind$19,250
Both Spouses 65 and Blind$20,800
Head of Household65 or Blind$23,850
65 and Blind$25,800
Qualifying Surviving Spouse65 or Blind$30,750
65 and Blind$32,300

Related: Child Tax Credit FAQs [What Every Parent Needs to Know]

Inflation Adjustments for the 2024 Standard Deduction Amounts

The 2024 basic standard deduction amounts for most people increased by approximately 5.4% when compared to the 2023 amounts (5.3% for head-of-household filers). That rate of increase is higher than what we normally see because the inflation rate is still relatively high.

However, the basic standard deduction jumped a whopping 6.95% from 2022 to 2023 for the majority of people (7.22% for head-of-household filers). That’s because the inflation rate was even higher that year than it was last year.

The standard deduction amounts don’t usually rise as swiftly as they have in the past two years, though. That’s because the inflation rate has been unusually high over the past couple of years.

Since the standard deduction was nearly doubled by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 (starting with the 2018 tax year), the increases have been more modest, as shown in the table below.

Tax YearHead of Household Filer’s Standard Deduction IncreaseAll Other Taxpayer’s Standard Deduction Increase
20223.19%3.18%
20210.80%1.21%
20201.63%1.64%
20191.94%1.67%

Note that, if any increase triggered by the inflation adjustment rules is not a multiple of $50, the increase is rounded to the next lowest multiple of $50.

Related: Capital Gains Tax: What Is It, Rates, Home Sales + More

Higher Standard Deduction for Qualified Disaster Loss


Standard Deduction disaster ruined house

You can claim a larger standard deduction if you have a net “qualified disaster loss” for the tax year, which is a casualty or theft loss of personal property stemming from:

  • A major disaster declared by the president in 2016
  • Hurricane Harvey
  • Tropical Storm Harvey
  • Hurricane Irma
  • Hurricane Maria
  • The California wildfires in 2017 and January 2018
  • A major disaster declared by the president that occurred in 2018 and before Dec. 21, 2019, and continued no later than January 19, 2020 (except those attributable to the California wildfires in January 2018 that received prior relief)
  • A major disaster that was declared by the president between Jan. 1, 2020, and Feb. 25, 2021, with an incident period from Dec. 28, 2019, to Dec. 27, 2020 (not including losses attributable to any major disaster declared only by reason of COVID-19)

Although these natural disasters all happened in previous tax years, you might not be able to increase your standard deduction until well after the disaster if there’s an insurance claim for reimbursement in the year of the loss. That’s because the loss is not deductible until you know with “reasonable certainty” whether you’ll actually be reimbursed for your loss. If you aren’t sure whether the loss (or even part of the loss) will be reimbursed, then wait until the tax year when you become reasonably certain that it won’t be reimbursed to claim the increased standard deduction.

Use Form 4684 to calculate your net qualified disaster loss. However, you don’t report the standard deduction increase with your other standard deduction amounts. Instead, report the loss as “Net Qualified Disaster Loss” on Schedule A (Form 1040). Also report your standard deduction amount as “Standard Deduction Claimed With Qualified Disaster Loss” on Schedule A.

Related: Retirement Saver’s Credit: What Is It, How Much, Who’s Eligible + More

 

Standard Deduction vs. Itemized Deductions


Standard Deduction itemized deductions form

As we mentioned earlier, when deciding to use the standard deduction or itemize, you can pick whichever one is higher—assuming you’re allowed to take the standard deduction (more on that in a bit).

While wealthier Americans are the ones who typically itemize deductions, ordinary people can also qualify for common itemized deductions that, in total, are greater than their standard deduction. For example, you might want to itemize if you:

  • Had large medical expenses that weren’t covered by insurance
  • Paid high state and local taxes (up to $10,000)
  • Had large uninsured casualty or theft losses
  • Made large charitable contributions
  • Paid home mortgage interest

The bottom line: If your total itemized deductions exceed your total standard deduction, then you’ll likely want to itemize your deductions.

Your state taxes might also influence your decision. In some states, if you pick the standard deduction for federal income tax purposes, you must also use the state standard deduction on your state income tax return. However, if the overall benefit of itemizing deductions on both returns is greater than the overall benefit of claiming the standard deduction, then you should itemize deductions when filing your federal taxes.

Who Can’t Claim the Standard Deduction?

You can’t take the standard deduction if:

  • You’re married but file separately, and your spouse itemizes deductions on his or her return
  • You’re filing a tax return for a short tax year because of a change in your annual accounting period
  • You’re a nonresident or dual-status alien during the tax year

A nonresident alien who is married to a U.S. citizen or resident alien at the end of the tax year can choose to be treated as a U.S. resident and, therefore, claim the standard deduction.

If you’re not permitted to take the standard deduction, you can still claim any itemized deduction for which you qualify.

Related: Earned Income Tax Credit: How Much, Eligibility + More

Other Deductions Available If You Claim the Standard Deduction


calculating accounting taxes pen

If you take the standard deduction, you can’t claim any itemized deduction found on  Schedule A. So no itemized deduction for medical expenses, state and local taxes, charitable contributions, home mortgage interest, and the like.

However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t other tax deductions you can take. In fact, our federal income tax system offers a long list of additional write-offs to lower your taxes if you choose the standard deduction over itemized deductions. These are commonly referred to as “above-the-line” deductions, since they are taken above the line for adjusted gross income on the federal 1040 form.

While not an exhaustive list, some of the more common above-the-line deductions are those for:

  • Classroom expenses for teachers and other educators
  • Health savings account (HSA) contributions
  • Health insurance for self-employed people
  • IRA contributions (although not for Roth IRAs)
  • Student loan interest
  • Moving expenses for members of the military
  • Alimony paid under a divorce or separation agreement entered into on before 2019
  • SEP, SIMPLE, and qualified plan contributions for employees (and for yourself if you’re a sole proprietor)
  • Jury duty pay handed over to your employer (e.g., if the employer paid your salary while on jury duty)

Related: How Are Social Security Benefits Taxed?

 

Prior-Year Standard Deductions


Standard Deduction itemized prior year tax return form

As described earlier, the standard deduction varies from year to year because it’s adjusted annually for inflation.

As a result, if you’re behind on filing your taxes for years before 2023 or filing an amended return, the 2023 and 2024 standard deductions spelled out above aren’t going to be of much use.

So, for anyone looking for prior-year information, the basic and additional standard deductions for 2016 to 2022 are provided below. (Note: Before 2022, the “qualifying surviving spouse” filing status was known as the “qualifying widow(er)” filing status.)

2022 Standard Deductions

Filing Status2022 Basic Standard Deduction2022 Additional Standard Deduction (65 or Blind)
Single$12,950$1,750
Married Filing Jointly$25,900$1,400
Married Filing Separately$12,950$1,400
Head of Household$19,400$1,750
Qualifying Surviving Spouse$25,900$1,400

2021 Standard Deductions

Filing Status2021 Basic Standard Deduction2021 Additional Standard Deduction (65 or Blind)
Single$12,550$1,700
Married Filing Jointly$25,100$1,350
Married Filing Separately$12,550$1,350
Head of Household$18,800$1,700
Qualifying Widow(er)$25,100$1,350

2020 Standard Deductions

Filing Status2020 Basic Standard Deduction2020 Additional Standard Deduction (65 or Blind)
Single$12,400$1,650
Married Filing Jointly$24,800$1,300
Married Filing Separately$12,400$1,300
Head of Household$18,650$1,650
Qualifying Widow(er)$24,800$1,300

2019 Standard Deductions

Filing Status2019 Basic Standard Deduction2019 Additional Standard Deduction (65 or Blind)
Single$12,200$1,650
Married Filing Jointly$24,400$1,300
Married Filing Separately$12,200$1,300
Head of Household$18,350$1,650
Qualifying Widow(er)$24,400$1,300

2018 Standard Deductions

Filing Status2018 Basic Standard Deduction2018 Additional Standard Deduction (65 or Blind)
Single$12,000$1,600
Married Filing Jointly$24,000$1,300
Married Filing Separately$12,000$1,300
Head of Household$18,000$1,600
Qualifying Widow(er)$24,000$1,300

2017 Standard Deductions

Filing Status2017 Basic Standard Deduction2017 Additional Standard Deduction (65 or Blind)
Single$6,350$1,550
Married Filing Jointly$12,700$1,250
Married Filing Separately$6,350$1,250
Head of Household$9,350$1,550
Qualifying Widow(er)$12,700$1,250

2016 Standard Deductions

Filing Status2016 Basic Standard Deduction2016 Additional Standard Deduction (65 or Blind)
Single$6,300$1,550
Married Filing Jointly$12,600$1,250
Married Filing Separately$6,300$1,250
Head of Household$9,300$1,550
Qualifying Widow(er)$12,600$1,250

Related:

Rocky has been covering federal and state tax developments for over 25 years. During that time, he has provided tax information and guidance to millions of tax professionals and ordinary Americans. As Senior Tax Editor for WealthUp from Jan. 2023 to Feb. 2024, Rocky spent most of his time writing and editing online tax content.

Before working for WealthUp, Rocky was a Senior Tax Editor for Kiplinger, where he wrote and edited tax content for Kiplinger.com, Kiplinger’s Retirement Report and The Kiplinger Tax Letter. Prior to his time at Kiplinger, Rocky was a Senior Writer/Analyst for Wolters Kluwer Tax & Accounting. In that role, he managed a portfolio of print and digital state income tax research products, led the development of various new print and online products, authored white papers and other special publications, coordinated with authors of a state tax treatise, and acted as media contact for the state income tax group (where he was quoted as an expert by USA Today, Forbes, U.S. News & World Report, Reuters, Accounting Today, and other national media outlets). Before that, Rocky was an Executive Editor at Kleinrock Publishing, which provided tax research products for tax professionals. At Kleinrock, he directed the development, maintenance, and enhancement of all state tax and payroll law publications, including electronic research products, monthly newsletters, and handbooks.

Rocky has a law degree from the University of Connecticut and a B.A. in History from Salisbury University.