Posted: May 23, 2005 By: Paul Dunn

Subject: AMT is an Undeclared Tax Increase

Comment: I am a frustrated taxpayer who has been snared by the misnamed Alternative Minimum Tax provision in the tax law. There is nothing minimum about it. I am in no way trying to pay less income tax than my fair share, but the AMT is in effect punishing me for having formerly deductable expenses. I pay W-2 payroll withholding taxes with an extra amount well beyond the zero dependents threshold, so there is no evasion involved. After going through the painful task of following the do's and do not's, if's, and then's to prepare legal deductions on IRS Form 1040 Schedule A, I find the AMT then takes the bulk of them away! It amounts to a bait-and-switch technique and an undeclared tax increase. This almost guarantees a higher tax payment, in my case typically 15% or more higher. The AMT Form 6251 is incredibly complex and therefore adds another pitfall for additional revenue through the fertile opportunity for mistakes to be made and the ensuing penalties and interest charges. It is not surprising the government is enjoying a growing windfall of several billions each year as the ATM net covers more and more basically middle-class taxpayers. The AMT is unfair in its disproportionate levy. I strongly urge the repeal or equitable modification of this onerous and unfair tax provision.