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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a question.

How does it work with deducting miles against income as non-compensated travel?

My new employer does not reimburse for mileage to/from work, but will compensate for work-related travel.

Here's the kicker. I live in Gate City. I was assigned to the office in Norton (40 miles away). They have an office in Gate City with an opening.

Likewise, the person I'm replacing in Norton lives there and is being assigned to the Gate City office.

Many employers with multiple offices will count the office closest to you as your office and comp for traveling further away. That's not the case here, but can I deduct against my taxes travel beyond the closest office I could have been working out of. I did not interview for the job in that location, nor did I ask for it. The woman going to Gate City didn't asked to be reassigned either.
 

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Kzin said:
I don't think travel to and from your daily job is subject to being compensated. I may be wrong, but it seems I looked into that once.
+1

http://www.irs.gov/formspubs/

http://www.irs.gov/taxtopics/tc511.html

Topic 511 - Business Travel Expenses

Travel expenses are the ordinary and necessary expenses of traveling away from home for your business, profession, or job. Generally, employees deduct these expenses using Form 2106 (PDF) or Form 2106-EZ (PDF) and on Schedule A, Form 1040 (PDF). You cannot deduct expenses that are lavish or extravagant or that are for personal purposes.

You are traveling away from home if your duties require you to be away from the general area of your tax home for a period substantially longer than an ordinary day's work, and you need to get sleep or rest to meet the demands of your work while away.

Generally, your tax home is the entire city or general area where your main place of business or work is located, regardless of where you maintain your family home. For example, you live with your family in Chicago but work in Milwaukee where you stay in a hotel and eat in restaurants. You return to Chicago every weekend. You may not deduct any of your travel, meals, or lodging in Milwaukee because that is your tax home. Your travel on weekends to your family home in Chicago is not for your work, so these expenses are also not deductible. If you regularly work in more than one place, your tax home is the general area where your main place of business or work is located.

In determining which is your main place of business, take into account the length of time you are normally required to spend at each location for business purposes, the degree of business activity in each area, and the relative significance of the financial return from each area. However, the most important consideration is the length of time spent at each location.

Travel expenses paid or incurred in connection with a temporary work assignment away from home are deductible. However, travel expenses paid in connection with an indefinite work assignment are not deductible. Any work assignment in excess of one year is considered indefinite. Also, you may not deduct travel expenses at a work location if it is realistically expected that you will work there for more than one year, whether or not you actually work there that long. If you realisticlly expect to work at a temporary location for less than one year, and the expectation changes so that at some point you realistically expect to work there for more than one year, travel expenses become nondeductible when your expectation changes.

You may deduct travel expenses, including meals and lodging, you had in looking for a new job in your present trade or business. You may not deduct these expenses if you had them while looking for work in a new trade or business or while looking for work for the first time. If you are unemployed and there is a substantial break between the time of your past work and your looking for new work, you may not deduct these expenses, even if the new work is in the same trade or business as your previous work.

Travel expenses for conventions are deductible if you can show that your attendance benefits your trade or business. Special rules apply to conventions held outside the North American area.

Deductible travel expenses while away from home include, but are not limited to, the costs of:

Travel by airplane, train, bus, or car between your home and your business destination,
Using your car while at your business destination,
Fares for taxis or other types of transportation between the airport or train station and your hotel, the hotel and the work location, and from one customer to another, or from one place of business to another,
Meals and lodging, and
Tips you pay for services related to any of these expenses.

Instead of keeping records of your meal expenses and deducting the actual cost, you can generally use a standard meal allowance ranging from $30 to $50 for certain high cost areas, depending on where you travel.

The deduction for business meals is generally limited to 50% of the unreimbursed cost.

If you are an employee, your allowable travel expenses are figured on Form 2106 or 2106–EZ. Your allowable unreimbursed expenses are carried from Form 2106 or 2106–EZ to Schedule A, Form l040, and are subject to a limit based on 2% of adjusted gross income. Refer to Topic 508 for information on the 2% limit. If you do not itemize your deductions, you cannot deduct these expenses. If you are self–employed, travel expenses are deductible on Schedule C, C–EZ, or, if you are a farmer, Schedule F, Form 1040 (PDF).

Good records are essential. Refer to Topic 305 for information on record keeping.

For more information on travel expenses, refer to Publication 463, Travel, Entertainment, Gift and Car Expenses.



TLM
:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Well, that's what I wonder.

The local office to where I live is in Gate City. It has openings. I'm assigned to the Norton office (far away) because that's where THEY want me. Likewise, the woman who is in Norton now (lives there) is being moved to the Gate City office.

Company policy is to not compensate for "commuting" mileage, but I see "commuting" as getting to the closest office you could work from. If they ask you to go to another office, they don't have to compensate you for it (employer), but then that excess mileage should be tax-deductible.

I'm wondering if anyone understands the IRS rules enough to know if that excess mileage which my employer won't compensate for is eligible to be tax-deductible (i.e., If it's 42 miles to work in Norton but the Gate City office is only 8 miles away, can I deduct the excess 34 miles?)

I know with another job (bank), they expected the employee to go to whatever bank they were to work at for that day. The comp policy was based on how far that other branch was from the nearest branch to where the employee lived.

This indicates (to me) that if your employer has multiple offices and you are sent to one farther than the one closest to where you live (presuming it is not at your request to go to the further office), your "commuting" mileage should end at the closest office you could operate out of.
 

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Honestly, I think you're diggin' in the wrong place.

Most people don't get paid to drive to work and back. If you did, don't you think you would also be paid part of your hourly wage along with mileage? I doubt that you *clock in* before you leave your house in the morning and when you get home in the evenings. I think the fact that there is a closer location is a moot point personally. You work where you work, and it's your responsibility financially to get there.

Just my .02 worth.
 

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Baby Gorilla said:
Well, that's what I wonder.

The local office to where I live is in Gate City. It has openings. I'm assigned to the Norton office (far away) because that's where THEY want me. Likewise, the woman who is in Norton now (lives there) is being moved to the Gate City office.

Company policy is to not compensate for "commuting" mileage, but I see "commuting" as getting to the closest office you could work from. If they ask you to go to another office, they don't have to compensate you for it (employer), but then that excess mileage should be tax-deductible.

I'm wondering if anyone understands the IRS rules enough to know if that excess mileage which my employer won't compensate for is eligible to be tax-deductible (i.e., If it's 42 miles to work in Norton but the Gate City office is only 8 miles away, can I deduct the excess 34 miles?)

I know with another job (bank), they expected the employee to go to whatever bank they were to work at for that day. The comp policy was based on how far that other branch was from the nearest branch to where the employee lived.

This indicates (to me) that if your employer has multiple offices and you are sent to one farther than the one closest to where you live (presuming it is not at your request to go to the further office), your "commuting" mileage should end at the closest office you could operate out of.
BG,

I understand what you were saying and had companies that would compensate the difference between traveling to the "home" office and to the "client" site.

However, as you are an employee of the company, and they offer no travel reimbursement I think you are screwed. Perhaps if you were a contractor or self-employee then you could do that.

I don't know the ins and outs of the taxes, but I don't believe there is any way you will get to write it off. Your primary place of business is the Norton office. As you choose to live in a different location, that is your choice. The IRS will not write off the difference as you don't work in the Gate City office.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I just thought I'd ask. When Bank of Tennessee said their policy was to comp mileage (for the floating tellers) when they worked any location farther than the closest location to the employee, I thought the same should apply here.

I didn't seek to work at the Norton office. In fact, I should be at the Gate City office. They are putting me there and taking the woman there and making her go to Gate City.

They comp for work-related travel, and since it's them, not us, wanting us to go to our respective locations (it's rather insane to make two people in the same job go to opposing locations rather than work them out of their local offices), I figure it might qualify.

The lady being made to go to Gate City isn't getting extra money in her paycheck to cover her travel expenses that she now has.

I can't consider relocating closer to work until after I'm through my probationary period.
 
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