Members of the Maryland Association of Certified Public...

Tax questions

February 07, 1997

Members of the Maryland Association of Certified Public Accountants are answering readers' tax questions through April 15.

Q. I sold mutual funds last year with substantial capital losses. These funds were in my name, using my Social Security number jointly with my brother. Since he has offsetting capital gains and I do not, am I permitted to let him claim the losses against his gains?

A. If you purchased the mutual funds yourself and you claimed all of the dividend and/or other income on the mutual funds, then only you can claim the capital losses. If your brother contributed to the initial purchase or reported part or all of the income, then he would be entitled to a pro-rated share of capital losses.

Q. I came to Maryland nearly a year ago on a temporary government contract from an employer in Pennsylvania. I'm being paid for food and lodging at the government rate. At what point does that become taxable?

A. The food and lodging is provided for the convenience of the employer. It is not taxable.

The above advice is for general purposes only and is not intended as legal, accounting or tax advice. Specific situations may vary.

To ask a tax question, call Sundial at (410) 783-1800. Call 268-7736 in Anne Arundel County, 836-5028 in Harford County and 848-0338 in Carroll County. Using a touch-tone phone, punch in the four-digit code 6225 after you hear the greeting.

Readers also can e-mail questions through The Sun's Website -- www.sunspot.net. Visitors to the Website will be able to access an archive of the questions and answers as well as other useful tax information and links.

Selected questions will be answered in the Business section. No questions will be answered by phone.

Pub Date: 2/07/97

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