26 Sep 6 Steps to Claiming Truck Driving Tax Deduction
Filing taxes is always a stressful part of being a truck driver. With the recent tax laws put in place by the federal government, the IRS has given considerable benefits to truck drivers who can deduct business expenses as “ordinary or necessary.”
To successfully file and pay your taxes, you will need to claim truck driving tax deductions. Here is a step-by-step guide to know how you can do it.
Step 1 – Determine Your Status
The status of your trucking job determines your tax deduction claim. There is a clear difference between filing your taxes as a company driver and an owner-operator. In each situation, you will use different forms to report income and deductions.
Step 2 – Prepare the Paperwork
The second step is to prepare the documents required for deduction claims. If you are a company driver, you will need to fill out a 1040 or 1040A Form, and a W-2 Form which you give to your employer. Avoid using the 1040EZ Form because it doesn’t allow trucking industry tax deductions.
If you are an owner-operator, use and prepare your detailed records to report your income. If you have done work as an independent contractor over the previous tax season, use Form 1099 to report miscellaneous income.
If you are a self-employed driver on commission, use a W-2 form and check off the “Statutory Driver” box. You should also fill out a Schedule C form to assess and report profit and loss over the past tax year.
Step 3 – Decide Between Actual Expenses and Standard Mileage Rates
Truck drivers have two options available to them for deducting truck expenses. You can use actual expenses which include deductable truck expenses like business fees and the cost of maintenance.
The second option is to claim deductions using standard mileage rates. Multiply the business rate with the miles you drove for those purposes to determine the amount of your deduction. Using this system, you can also deduct parking and toll fees, but nothing else.
Step 4 – Know What Tax Deduction You Can Include
Usual tax deductions include expenses that are used for professional use. When you want to claim a deduction on driving costs, you will need to determine the exact purpose of your claim:
- Business Purposes – driving involved exclusively for business (commuting to meet with a client is deductible, commuting from home to work is not);
- Medical Purposes – driving involved when getting medical care (use a Schedule A to report the expenses);
- Charitable Purposes – driving involved with volunteering for charity, medical facilities or religious centers;
- Moving and Relocating – driving to relocate to a new residence for business purposes (at least 50 miles from your old home).
Step 5 – File Your Taxes
Once you have everything prepared it’s time to file your taxes. You can use mail or electronic filing to submit your taxes for deductions. If you’re unsure about claiming your tax deductions, consider hiring professionals.
Step 6 – Ask Professionals for Help
Here at Golden Tax Relief, we know the difficulties of filing taxes for truck drivers in the United States. That’s why our tax relief services help hard-working truck drivers find a personalized solution that resolves all their tax-related issues.
Contact us to schedule your free consultation with our dedicated team of professionals and claim your truck driving tax deduction today.