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by CareyBot

DEAR BENNY: I was told by a prominent accountant that there is a loophole in the law that states that you can be exempt from paying capital gains (if you are in a home less than the two-year period) if there are "unforeseen circumstances" involved. Are you aware of this? Can you doublecheck to make sure? This accountant is well trusted by a lot of businesspeople! At the time I was going through an "unforeseen" divorce. --Patricia DEAR PATRICIA: In general, in order to take advantage of the up-to-$500,000 exclusion of gain ($250,000 if you file a separate tax return), you have to own and live in the house for two out of the five years before it is sold. However, the law does allow a partial exclusion under certain circumstances. There are three "safe harbo...