Information from the Washington
State Department of Revenue:
Property Tax Exemptions and Deferrals for Senior Citizens and
How to Compute Disposable
The maximum levels of income to qualify for each program are
different. However, computation of disposable income is the same
under both programs. The disposable income you received the year
before you apply determines your eligibility for both programs.
Disposable income includes all sources, whether or not they are
taxable for federal income tax purposes. You may not deduct losses
or depreciation. Some of the most common sources of income include:
- Wages, salaries, and tips
- Social Security benefits
- Railroad retirement benefits
- Pension and annuity receipts, including retirement bonds,
Individual Retirement Accounts, and distributions from Keogh
plans. An annuity is a payment of a fixed sum of money received
at regular intervals. Some examples of annuity payments
include unemployment compensation, disability pay payments,
and welfare receipts (excluding amounts received for the
care of dependent children).
- Interest and dividend receipts
- Business income. Depreciation and business losses may not
- Rental income. Depreciation and rental losses may not be
- Capital gains
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If you were retired for two or more months of the preceding
year, your household income will be computed by multiplying the
average monthly disposable income received during the months you
were retired by twelve. If your spouse died before November 1
of the preceding year, your household income is computed by multiplying
the average monthly disposable income, after the death of your
spouse, by twelve.
Deductions from Disposable
When computing disposable income, you may take deductions for
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- Capital gains you receive from the sale of your principal
residence if the gain is reinvested in a replacement principal
- Non-reimbursed amounts you pay for yourself or your spouse
to live in a nursing home, boarding home or adult family
- Non-reimbursed amounts you pay for goods and services
that allow you, your spouse, or co-tenant to receive in-home
care. The care received must be similar to the care provided
by a nursing home.
- Medical treatment, physical therapy, Meals on Wheels
(or similar meal delivery service), household and personal
tasks are examples of service expenses that you may deduct.
Personal care tasks include receiving assistance- with meal
preparation, eating, dressing, medications, and personal
- Special furniture and equipment, such as wheelchairs
and hospital beds, and oxygen are examples of goods expenses
that you may deduct.
- Non-reimbursed prescription drugs.
- Medicare-Part B Insurance Premiums (beginning with 2005
Additional information may be obtained
in the tax statute (Chapters 84.36 and 84.38 of the Revised
Code of Washington) and in the Department of Revenue's administrative
rules (Chapters 458-16A and 458-18 of the Washington Administrative
If you have any
questions or need assistance in completing the application,
contact the Whatcom County Assessor's Office.
Or you may contact:
State of Washington,
Department of Revenue
Property Tax Division
PO Box 47471
Olympia, Washington 98504-7471
Telephone: (360) 570-5900
To inquire about
the availability of this information in an alternate format
for the visually impaired, please call 360-705-6715.
Teletype (TTY) users please call (360) 705-6718.
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