Adoption Exemption

Prior to 2001:
An exemption was allowed for fees paid to a licensed adoption agency for the adoption of a minor child that exceeded 3% of the taxpayer's Massachusetts Form 1, line 10 or 1-NR/PY, Line 12 income.

Medical Exemptions

Same-Sex Joint Filers

Impact of the Federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) – Tax Years Prior to 2013:
The terms "marriage" and "spouse" differed in meaning between Massachusetts and federal law. The Federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) stated that the word "marriage" meant only a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife, and the word "spouse" referred only to a person of the opposite sex who was a husband or a wife. Since federal law did not recognize same-sex civil marriage, same-sex spouses remained as individual filers for federal purposes.

Where elements of Massachusetts taxation derived from federal law, such as the definition of gross income, or state deductions based on a federal counterpart, same-sex spouses had to perform special calculations to arrive at the proper Massachusetts tax figure.

Special Calculations to Arrive at the Proper Massachusetts Tax:
For deductions such as alimony payments, moving expenses, medical exemption, etc., same-sex joint filers had to combine the amounts from their federal returns (pro-forma 1040) to arrive at the amount to be reported on the Massachusetts joint return.

For the medical exemption, they  had to recalculate their combined allowable expenses as appearing on Federal Form 1040, Schedule A, under the heading 'Medical and Dental Expenses', combining their AGIs to use in performing the 7.5% calculation.

Personal Exemptions

Tax Year 2007: (2004 Law Change)

Filing Status2007 Exemption Amount
Single; Married filing Separate$4,125
Head of Household$6,375
Married Filing Joint$8,250

Health Insurance Requirement:
Beginning July 1, 2007, a new Massachusetts law stated that residents age 18 and over had to have health insurance. With few exceptions, adults had to show that they had health insurance by December 31, 2007, by filing Schedule HC, Health Care Information pdf format of HC.pdf
(PDF), with their Form 1 or Form 1-NR/PY.

Individuals with private health insurance received a Form 1099-HC pdf format of 1099_hc.pdf
(PDF), Massachusetts Health Care Coverage, from their health insurance provider. Certain information from this form was needed to complete Schedule HC.

Those who could not show that they had health insurance lost the tax benefit of their personal exemption on their 2007 Massachusetts income tax return. This tax benefit was $219 for an individual taxpayer.

Tax Year 2006: (2004 Law Change)

Filing Status2006 Exemption Amount
Single; Married filing Separate$3,850
Head of Household$5,950
Married Filing Joint$7,700

Tax Year 2005: (2004 Law Change)
Filing Status2005 Exemption Amount
Single; Married filing Separate$3,575
Head of Household$5,525
Married Filing Joint$7,150

Tax Years 2002 - 2004: (2002 Law Change)
Filing Status2002 - 2004 Exemption Amount
Single; Married filing Separate$3,300
Head of Household$5,100
Married Filing Joint$6,600

Massachusetts References