Fair Market Value

The price for which you could sell a piece of property on the open market under current economic conditions.


A grant generally received for educational or scholarly purposes. Funds are nontaxable when used for qualified expenses.


A tax on employment required by the Federal Insurance Contributions Act. This payroll tax is used to fund Social Security and Medicare.

Filing Status

A category of taxpayer. Each taxpayer must select a filing status on their tax return: Single, Head of Household, Married Filing Jointly, Married Filing Separately, or Qualifying Widow(er). Filing status determines things such as your overall tax rate and your eligibility and income limits for various credits and deductions.

Flat Tax

A tax based on the same percentage of income for all taxpayers, regardless of income level.

Flexible Spending Account (FSA)

Also called a reimbursement account. A special employer sponsored account which is generally used for approved medical expenses. Your contributions are taken directly from your paycheck before taxes are applied and are sometimes matched by an employer dollar for dollar. Funds contributed to some FSA's may become unavailable at the end of the year.


The legal process by which a lender takes possession of a home when the homeowner has defaulted on the mortgage.

Fringe Benefit

A fringe benefit is compensation given to you by your employer in addition to your regular pay. The value of any fringe benefit is generally taxable. Examples of fringe benefits include: employee discounts, stock options, services, transportation, access to facilities, group term life insurance, expense reimbursement, etc.


A tax on employment required by the Federal Unemployment Tax Act. This payroll tax is used to fund state unemployment insurance programs and state job agencies.