Income Tax: Deductible Truck Expenses

Whether you lease from a carrier or operate under your authority, you can deduct taxes for any expense related to running your trucking business.

There are quite a few business expenses often overlooked by owner-operators when they file their taxes. We’re listing the most common ones below:

NOTE: It’s essential you keep records of all of your expenses throughout the year along with you’re your receipts so that you can provide proof to the IRS if needed.

Depreciating Property

You can deduct any equipment you use for your business that depreciates over time. These items include:

  • Trucks
  • Trailers
  • Buildings
  • Computers
  • Fax machines
  • Copiers
  • Furniture

Casualty Financial Loss

You can write off the expenses in case any of your assets or your vehicle alone have suffered damage from extreme weather conditions or an accident during the tax year.

Home Office

If your home office is the primary place of your business, i.e., you use it to go through the books and handle everything related to business, you qualify for this deduction. However, if you don’t use your home office regularly, you don’t qualify.

Business-Related Loans and Mortgages

All throughout your calendar year, you can deduct your interest payments.

Phone and Internet Access Fees

As allowed by the IRS, you can deduct 50% of the access fees you pay for your mobile devices.

ATM, Bank and Credit Card Fees

Truckers can only write off transaction fees they incur when conducting business.

Satellite Radio

Usually, you can deduct the cost of a subscription from your taxes if you are using satellite radio for weather and traffic information.

Truck Maintenance Costs

Any maintenance and cleaning expenses associated with your truck maintenance can be deducted from your taxes. In case you do your repairs, you won’t be able to deduct the cost of labor, but only the parts used.


Fuel cards along with the out-of-pocket fuel costs can be deducted.

Licenses, Permits and other Government Fees

For the most part, 50% of your self-employment tax is deductible. The cost of weight violations, speeding tickets, or other penalties paid to the government cannot be deducted.  

Per Diem Costs

While on the road, you can deduct a per diem cost of lodging, meals, and other expenses, making this deduction way more convenient than saving all your receipts. However, if you are working for a carrier while being a self-employed driver, the only expenses you can deduct are those that weren’t reimbursed by the carrier.

Uniform and Laundry

If you are required to wear a company uniform by the carrier you work for, you can deduct its cost and maintenance (i.e., cleaning) on your tax return. Moreover, you can also deduct any expenses of doing laundry while on the road.

Retirement Plans

Contributions to retirement plans such as an IRA or a Keogh plan are tax deductible. You can use them for yourself or your spouse.

Truck Lease

A 100% of your truck payments are deductible under a lease-purchase agreement. However, your security deposit is not deductible.

If you are a trucker and you need more information on tax-deductible truck expenses, contact us at Golden Tax Relief for a consultation. We’ll be happy to help!

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