2014 – IRS Standard Mileage Rates Announced

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By Stacey Gorowitz, CPA, MBA It’s time to reveal the long-awaited IRS standard mileage rates for 2014. And they are (drumroll, please): 56 cents per mile for the optional business standard mileage rate 23.5 cents per mile for qualified medical and moving expenses 14 cents per each mile driven for charitable purposes Let the celebrations begin! But wait – aren’t some of those numbers lower than last year’s rates? Yes, your memory does not deceive you. The IRS has reduced the optional business standard and medical/moving expense rates from their 2013 levels of 56.5 and 24 cents per mile, respectively. (The charitable miles rate remains the same.) With gas prices generally trending lower than they have been in recent years, the IRS thought it prudent to reduce mileage cost deduction rates to reflect the change. … [Read more...]

I Can Deduct That, Right?

You can deduct cat food?

By Stacey Gorowitz, CPA, MBA As the end of the year approaches, many of us are looking more intently at the things we spend money on and wondering which of them might possibly be tax deductible. While it never hurts to scrutinize financial outlays with an eye for hidden deductions, it’s easy to stretch the bounds of realism in our zeal to minimize the tax bill we know is coming. On the other hand, maybe the dividing line between fantasy and reality isn’t where you’d expect to find it when it comes to deductibility. Here are some of the more unusual things the IRS has accepted as legitimate writeoffs in recent years. Cat food. The resourceful couple who pulled off this one deducted the food they used to entice feral cats to their junkyard. While there, the cats also kept the facility more customer-friendly (and safer) by keeping down the population of snakes and rats that also liked the area. Body oil. If you’re a pro wrestler, greasing up those rippling muscles to … [Read more...]