The IRS isn't known for surprisingly nice acts. There's not any time in history where the IRS was like, "Hey, everybody did their best this year -- everybody gets a credit for trying to be a good citizen." Likewise, it occasionally feels like they're punishing us for trying, like when they tax Social Security benefits. Weren't those taxed once already?
But one common miscellaneous expense deduction is a downright sweet gesture from old Uncle Sam. We can actually deduct the cost of our tax preparation. It feels like a nice token, doesn't it? And don't think you have to meet face to face with a human person for your taxes to get the break: Even tax preparation software is deductible. You can write off the cost of e-filing, in general. The only caveat is that you have to write off the expenses for the year before. So if it's 2015 and you're filing your 2014 tax return, you can include the cost of preparing your 2013 return. (Since, ostensibly, you paid the cost in 2014.) That's one miscellaneous expense deduction nearly all of us can take advantage of.