10 Types of Income the IRS Will NOT Tax in 2024 (Thankfully!)

SAVING & SPENDING - TAXES
Cashback credit card rewards and health-care costs are just two of the surprising items that aren’t taxable.
Updated March 18, 2024
Fact checked
satisfied young woman

We receive compensation from the products and services mentioned in this story, but the opinions are the author's own. Compensation may impact where offers appear. We have not included all available products or offers. Learn more about how we make money and our editorial policies.

Whether you're new to filing your own taxes or a seasoned professional looking for ways to increase personal tax savings, understanding what income the IRS doesn’t tax can be very helpful.

This can help you keep more money in your bank account and be more tax-savvy throughout the year instead of just waiting to see what you qualify for each tax season.

Here are 10 items you won't have to pay taxes on in 2024. (This means you could have a bigger return next year and more opportunity to help your return grow.) 

Child support and some alimony payments

Jacob Lund/Adobe smiling man playing with his kid outdoors

Good news for divorced couples: You don't have to pay taxes on child support payments or some alimony payments. If child support payments are a requirement of the divorce settlement, they are not considered taxable income by the IRS.

This means that you won't have to pay any federal or state taxes on your child support payments, provided you still meet the requirements of your original agreement.

Alimony is a bit more complicated. Alimony payments made according to divorce decrees finalized after January 1, 2019, aren't taxed as income for the receiving party. However, if your divorce was finalized before 2018, then you may still be liable for paying taxes on alimony you receive from your ex-spouse.

So if you have alimony payments, be sure to double-check the date of your decree and find out if those payments will be tax-free in 2024.

Want to learn how to build wealth like the 1%? Sign up for Worthy to get ideas and advice delivered to your inbox.

Rebates and cashback rewards from credit cards

deagreez/Adobe cheerful guy holding in hands

Rewards programs are more popular than ever, especially with offers for the best cashback credit cards. In fact, many credit card issuers now offer rewards cards with huge cash back bonuses just for signing up.

With these cards, you can earn anywhere from 1% back on purchases to 5% back when you shop at certain merchants. Some even offer 0% intro APR promotions and no foreign transaction fees.

But here’s the best part: You don’t have to pay taxes on your cash back or rebates. That means all of those points, miles, and rewards can be used for whatever you like without worrying about a tax bill at the end of the year.

Inheritance

Thitiphat/Adobe female lawyer  discussing negotiation legal case with client

Whatever you inherit won't be subject to taxation in 2024. There is no need to worry about dealing with complex tax forms or seeking out a qualified accountant to help make sure your return is as accurate as possible.

Inheritance tax laws vary from state to state and can be quite confusing for the average person. The good news is that in 2024, all inheritances in the U.S. will enjoy exemption from taxation (except for 6 states: Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Nebraska, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania), which means more money in your pocket.

Resolve $10,000 or more of your debt

Credit card debt is suffocating. It constantly weighs on your mind and controls every choice you make. You can end up emotionally and even physically drained from it. And even though you make regular payments, it feels like you can never make any progress because of the interest.

National Debt Relief could help you resolve your credit card debt with an affordable plan that works for you. Just tell them your situation, then find out your debt relief options.1

How to get National Debt Relief to help you resolve your debt: Sign up for a free debt assessment here. (Do not skip this step!) By signing up for a free assessment, National Debt Relief can assist you in settling your debt, but only if you schedule the assessment.

Try it

Life insurance payouts

thodonal/Adobe life insurance

In 2024, you won't have to pay taxes on life insurance payouts. This means that if someone in your family was insured and you receive a payout upon their passing, you can rest assured knowing that the entirety of the payout is yours to keep.

This is a major benefit for those who are receiving life insurance payouts, especially at an already emotionally taxing time. Plus, not having to worry about additional taxes takes off some of the financial strain. 

However, any interest you receive is taxable, and you should report it as interest received. 

Olympic and Paralympic medals and USOC prize money

Jacob Lund/Adobe athletes celebrating winning gold

If you're an Olympic or Paralympic athlete, you know that it's a long road to the top. It takes years of hard work, dedication, and money to make it as an elite athlete. But all that effort might just pay off because U.S. Olympic and Paralympic medals and USOC prize money are exempt from taxes.

That's right: Your gold, silver, or bronze medal at the next Olympics won't trigger a tax bill come April 15th. The same goes for any bonus cash you win from the United States Olympic Committee (USOC). So if you ascend the podium with Team USA, your success can be yours to keep, without Uncle Sam taking a cut.

Qualified adoption expenses

Rido/Adobe multiethnic children in a circle

Adopting a child can cost anywhere from four to six figures, depending on the circumstances. The IRS provides a tax credit for qualified adoption expenses, but the rules are complex, and families who are adopting should probably seek the help of a tax expert.

Qualified adoption expenses include attorney fees, court costs, travel expenses associated with the adoption process (such as airfare or hotel fees), agency fees, medical expenses related to the health of your adopted child, and more.

Health care benefits

Flamingo Images/Adobe black female doctor in front of medical team

Health care benefits are also something you don't have to pay taxes on. This is great news for those who receive health insurance through their employer or purchase it themselves.

This benefit applies to both individual and group health insurance plans, as well as government-funded programs like Medicare and Medicaid.

Additionally, this includes long-term care coverage, vision and dental plans, mental health services, and other ancillary benefits like transportation assistance for medical appointments.

Plus, if you take part in a flexible spending account (FSA) or health savings account (HSA), you can use that money tax-free as long as it goes toward approved medical expenses.

Retail cash rebates

PaeGAG/Adobe man using cashback app on phone

Retail cash rebates are discounts offered when customers purchase goods and services from them. When customers buy something, they get a percentage back in the form of a rebate check, gift card, or other type of reward.

Generally, these discounts range from 1% to 10% of the original price but can be even greater depending on how much you buy. The main benefit of retail cash rebates is that they are generally non-taxable.

The IRS treats a rebate as lowering the cost of a purchase, not as income. This means that if you get a rebate check from your favorite store, you don't have to declare it as income when filing your taxes.

Scholarships

zimmytws/Adobe scholarship cap on money

Scholarships aren’t taxed as long as they are used for qualifying education costs. You can rest easy knowing that any scholarship money you receive or give will not be taxed this year.

If you're a student looking to fund your college education through scholarships, then this is great to know. Instead of worrying about how much of your award money could possibly go toward taxes each year, you can focus on furthering your studies and eventually getting a degree.

Earn cash back on everyday purchases with this rare account

Want to earn cash back on your everyday purchases without using a credit card? With the Discover®️ Cashback Debit Checking account (member FDIC), you can earn 1% cash back on up to $3,000 in debit card purchases each month!2

With no credit check to apply and no monthly fees to worry about, you can earn nearly passive income on purchases you’re making anyway — up to an extra $360 a year!

This rare checking account has other great perks too, like access to your paycheck up to 2 days early with Early Pay, no minimum deposit or monthly balance requirements, over 60K fee-free ATMs, and the ability to add cash to your account at Walmart stores nationwide.

Don’t leave money on the table — it only takes minutes to apply and it won’t impact your credit score.

Apply for a Discover Cashback Checking account today

Gifts

Mix and Match Studio/Adobe man having birthday party and receiving gifts

Gift givers can rest easy knowing that their generosity isn't going to cost them or the recipient anything in taxes up to a certain amount. 

But before they go on a gift-giving spree, it's important to remember that there are some limitations and restrictions imposed by the IRS regarding gifts. For example, a parent may give a child up to $18,000 in the 2024 tax year without incurring a tax. 

The IRS says a gift must be given with "detached generosity," meaning that the gift cannot be conditional upon receiving something from the recipient in return. Gifts cannot be used to pay off a debt or as part of a business transaction.

Bottom line

dusanpetkovic1/Adobe young smiling man holding bills in his hands and calculating payment

There are lots of great things you don't have to pay taxes on in 2024. We've gone over some tax-free items, like certain scholarships, gifts and inheritances, health care benefits, alimony payments, and more.

Just remember that these items should be verified with your accountant or tax preparer before filing your taxes. This can help you get ahead financially this year and next as you prepare yourself for next year's tax bill.

If you’re preparing your own taxes using the right tax software, know that the latest programs are updated with current tax laws each year.

Choice Home Warranty Benefits

  • First month free
  • Protection for unexpected expense
  • 24/7 claims hotline
  • Network of over 15,000 technicians

Author Details

Ryan Clancy Ryan Clancy is a freelance writer and blogger. He's passionate about all things finance and tech, especially personal finance, and bringing it down to a level that everyone can understand. Ryan lives in New York City, and writes about all types of finance and tech at sites such as Forbes, iCap, Nas Academy, PolicyScout, Integrate.io, and many more.

Want to learn how to make an extra $200?

Get proven ways to earn extra cash from your phone, computer, & more with Extra.

You will receive emails from FinanceBuzz.com. Unsubscribe at any time. Privacy Policy

  • Vetted side hustles
  • Exclusive offers to save money daily
  • Expert tips to help manage and escape debt