Subtract line 17 from line 16 (If less than zero, see instructions)
 
Instructions
Line 18—Amount Available To Pay Additional Tax
If line 17 is larger than line 16, line 18 will be negative. You will owe additional tax. To figure the amount owed, treat the amount on line 18 as positive and add it to the amount on line 10. Enter the the result on line 19.
 
Further instructions
Line 13
You do not qualify for a refund if 1 (a, b, or c), 2, and 3 below apply to you.
1. You were:
a. Under age 18 at the end of 2011, or
b. Age 18 at the end of 2011 and your earned income
(defined later) was less than one-half of your support
(defined later), or
b. Over age 18 and under age 24 at the end of 2011 and a full time student (defined later) and your earned income
(defined later) was less than one-half of your support
(defined later).
2. At least one of your parents was alive at the end of 2011.
3. You are not filing a joint return for 2011
 
 
So you get a negative number, then use the absolute value and add it to line 10.
 
And, if 1 AND 2 AND 3 apply, but only if 1a OR 1b OR 1c apply, then take the credit, but only if you meet these conditions, then check the box next to line 13, skip to line 14 and enter the amount from line 13 on line 15.
 

This is for real!!!

 
How many hundreds of millions of man-hours are wasted doing this stuff?
 
Imagine what would be saved if:
  • No one had to interpret the tax laws to determine what was owed and what was not
  • No one had to try to figure out how to word the directions to make these forms work.
  • No one had to write/update and test a complex algorithm like this each and every year
  • No one had to maintain the hundreds of volumes that contain the current law
  • If no one had to spend tens and hundreds of hours in schooling each year to learn how to decipher this code for the benefit of their clients
 
Think about the tax industry from one end to the other.  Millions upon millions of dollars just to figure it out and get it right.  What if… what if this all ended?
 
Every one simply paid a flat tax.  Rich or poor, material possessions or not.
– What if instead of the poor spending hundreds of dollars to fight for every penny we let them pocket that money and asked if they made more than $x, then you owe a % of that to Uncle Sam?
– What if instead of the rich spending thousands of dollars to fight for every penny, then finding loopholes to keep more than the poor, we asked them to pay the same % as the poor to Uncle Sam.
– What if for the vast majority in the middle was asked them to complete a form with 5 or 6 lines and pay the same % to Uncle Sam.
 
The system is fair.  All have an equal voice in the political process, all should have the same level of contribution – proportional to their earnings – assuming they even have enough to live.
 
Uncle Sam would be happier.  All the money it loses each year for codification of the law, analysis, audits, bureaucratic salaries, etc.  That could virtually be eliminated.  Think of the savings to the government AND the taxpayer.  Wouldn’t that result in increased productivity that actually fed into the GDP?  Wouldn’t we all be better off?
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