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J.K. Lasser's Small Business Taxes 2013: Your Complete Guide to a Better Bottom Line by Barbara Weltman

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Local Transportation Costs

Do you travel from your office to see clients or customers? Do you have more than 1 business location? Do you have an office in your home but go into the field to transact business? If the answer to any of these questions is yes, you may be able to deduct local transportation costs. More specifically, local transportation costs include the cost of work-related travel within the area of your tax home.

Tax home
In general, your tax home is the entire city or general area of your regular place of business. If you have more than 1 business interest, then it is the location of your main business interest based on the comparative time spent in each location and the income derived from each business interest. If you do not have a regular place of business, you are considered an itinerant without any tax home.

Deductible Costs

Local transportation costs include the cost of driving and maintaining your car (including tolls and parking) or the cost of taxis, bus fare, train fare, or airfare. Computing the cost of driving and maintaining your car is discussed in Chapter 9.

Commuting Costs

As a general rule, the costs of commuting between your home and workplace are not deductible. Thus, your bus or train fare, gas for your car, bridge and highway tolls, and parking fees are nondeductible. This rule does not change merely because the commute is unusually long or you do work on the way (e.g., reading reports on the train, talking to clients on your car phone, ...

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