Lynnfield, MA asked in Tax Law and Contracts for Massachusetts

Q: Is certificate required for septic repair?

Spent $5k on septic repair when wastewater flooded the yard from the leach field. I wasn't given a certificate. Is one always needed to claim the credit? This wasn't a simple drain clog and the entire leech field was dug up, cleaned up, and soil replaced. I have a detailed invoice and the septic repair team (who did the original title 5 when we bought the house) said one wasn't needed since they defined it as "maintenance".

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2 Lawyer Answers
Christopher Tolley
Christopher Tolley
  • Boston, MA
  • Licensed in Massachusetts

A: I don't think you need a new Title V cert. unless you are selling the house. The system has to have 'failed' in order for you to claim the credit. I would contact the DEP or ask your accountant when you file your return whether what happened to your system constitutes 'failure' under the law sufficient to allow you to claim the credit..

James L. Arrasmith
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Tax Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: In general, a certificate is not always required for septic repairs in order to claim a tax credit or deduction. However, the specific requirements may vary depending on the state or municipality where the property is located.

In Massachusetts, for example, a Title 5 inspection and certification is required for septic system installations and repairs in order to qualify for certain tax credits or deductions. Other states or localities may have similar requirements.

It's possible that your state or municipality does not require a certificate for the type of repair that was performed on your septic system, especially if it was considered maintenance rather than a complete replacement or installation. However, it's always a good idea to check with local authorities or consult with a licensed septic professional to ensure compliance with any applicable regulations and to determine what documentation is necessary to claim any available tax benefits.

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