DEFINITION of 'Form 4684: Casualties And Thefts'

A tax form distributed by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) used to report casualties and thefts of personal property. Taxpayers can deduct losses stemming from fires, floods and other casualties, as well as robberies, larcenies and other forms of theft. Losses are to be deducted in the tax year that they occurred or, in the case of a theft, when they were discovered.


Personal injury related to the loss, such as bodily injury from a storm that also damaged a home, cannot be deducted. Taxpayers who submit an insurance claim for a loss and receive reimbursement greater than the cost basis of the property may be required to pay additional taxes.


Form 4684 is not to be used for casualties and theft affecting income-producing or business property.

BREAKING DOWN 'Form 4684: Casualties And Thefts'

If the property is covered by insurance, only the part of the loss not covered can be deducted. If the property is covered and the taxpayer does not submit a timely insurance claim, then the loss cannot be deducted.


Damage resulting from major disasters, such as hurricanes, sometimes falls under unique provisions that only last for a few years. For example, special provisions were made available to victims of Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

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