Tax time is often stressful and you want to take all of the deductions to which you are entitled. Many of these are connected to work. For example, if you use your car for work, gas, oil, and mileage can be deducted. People who work from home and have a room dedicated as an office for work can deduct a percentage of their mortgage or rent for that room.
Travel expenses for work such as rental cars, airline tickets, and hotel expenses are certainly deductible. What if you don’t own a car and use a rideshare service such as Uber or Lyft to get to and from work? Can you deduct those expenses from your taxes? The answer is not simple.
Work-related travel always qualifies as a tax deduction. Tax codes clearly define work-related travel as moving from one place to another for the purpose of performing your job. Traveling salespeople do this all the time. Attending a conference, seminar, or training session someplace other than where you normally work would also qualify, providing you pay your own travel expenses.
Hotel stays that you pay out of pocket also qualify as do train or airline tickets, baggage fees, or anything related to that travel. For this reason, you should always save receipts for your accountant and a log of your expenses is also a good idea.
Services such as Uber and Lyft have become popular and are generally efficient ways to get from place to place for those who don’t have access to a car. They are especially helpful in areas that don’t have taxi companies or reliable forms of mass transit. Many people use rideshare services to get to and from their jobs. Are these expenses tax deductible?
Commuting to and from work, no matter the mode of transportation or distance is considered a personal financial expense. Your employer is not responsible for your gas and maintenance on your car, your bus or train fare, or the cost of your rideshare. Therefore, rideshare expenses used on your daily commute are not tax deductible.
Rideshare for Work-Related Travel
Work-related travel is a different matter altogether. It implies travel other than getting to and from work. For example, if your company has multiple locations and you were assigned to travel to a different location to train, be trained, or for any purpose connected to your job.
Meeting a client for lunch or dinner to discuss anything related to work would also qualify as a business expense and a deduction. This would include using a rideshare service to travel to and from any of these places in any of these situations. You definitely want to save the receipt from your ride and write it down in your expense log.
Expenses of commuting to and from work are not tax deductible. However, the cost of travel for work-related purposes is and includes rideshare fees. Keep track of all of these expenses for your accountant. For reliable tax preparation, contact KDK Accountancy Corporation at (407) 759-5363. Their accountants know the tax code and will find every deduction you are entitled to.