Your year-end tax planning may be particularly challenging this year, as Congress has yet to act on a host of tax breaks expiring at the end of 2014. The fate of these tax breaks may not be clear until the end of the year, or possibly the beginning of next year.

For individuals, these breaks include the option to deduct state and local sales and use taxes instead of state and local income taxes, the above-the-line deduction for qualified higher education expenses, tax-free IRA distributions for charitable purposes by those age 70 ½ or older, and the exclusion for up to $2 million of mortgage debt forgiveness on a principal residence.

Our firm can help narrow down the specific actions that will help you save valuable tax dollars if you act before year-end. In the meantime, the following checklist outlines possible advisable actions for individuals under the current tax rules.

Don’t hesitate to contact our firm if you’re considering taking any of the above actions to minimize your payments in 2014. In our next article, we’ll discuss specific considerations and advisable actions for businesses under current tax rules.