Question #1: My boss usually gives me a present for the holidays, but this year she gave me a bonus check. Will I need to include these funds on my next tax return?
Yes, any cash gifts or items that are “easily exchangeable” for cash that you are given by an employer should be reported to the IRS. However, since your employer printed you out a check then odds are that she intends to include it on your W-2 form, but if you want to be extra cautious then you can always ask her. For more information on the tax implications of holiday presents from employers check out this entry on the RDTC Tax Help Blog.
Question #2: What is the 2009 standard deduction amount?