Can I claim a tax deduction for unreimbursed mileage?

August 22, 2011

From:  Maria
Date:  Mon, 23 Nov 2009

Hi Michael.

I am required for my employment to travel to different stores throughout the day. My company pays 32¢ per mile, but only for a portion of my drive time. There are about 80 miles per work day that they do not cover. I have been keeping a mileage log for my commuting and traveling. The IRS standard mileage rate for 2009 is 55¢ per mile. Can I claim a deduction for the mileage that my employer doesn't reimburse?

Thanks,
Maria

Answer

Date:  4 Dec 2009

Hello Maria,

Not all mileage is deductible. For example, commuting to work (or your first stop of the day) and home from work (or from your last stop of the day home) aren't deductible.

You can deduct your 2009 standard mileage allowance of 55¢ per business mile minus the reimbursed amount on Form 2106, Employee Business Expenses. Be aware employee business expenses are miscellaneous itemized deductions, from which 2% of adjusted gross income is subtracted, so it's hard to qualify for a deduction.

Also see IRS Publication 463, especially pages 14 through 16 and pages 28 through 30. You can get it at www.irs.gov or by calling the IRS or visiting an IRS office.

Good luck!


Mike Gray

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