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Remember to deduct your charity travel expenses

You’re likely aware that providing financial gifts or goods to charity entitles you to an individual tax deduction…but did you know traveling in the service of an organization may qualify as deductible travel expenses?

Some stipulations include:

  • You must perform genuine work for the charity for most of the trip. If you spend a lot of time with your toes in the sand—without any, or many, duties—the trip classifies as a vacation.
  • The IRS must recognize the organization as a qualified charity. Check the group’s status on the IRS website. Churches and governments automatically qualify and won’t appear on the list.
  • Your time and talents are your gift to the organization, so they’re not deductible.
  • Expenses you claim must be:
    • Unreimbursed,
    • Connected directly with the services, and
    • Spent only because of the services provided.
  • You can’t claim personal, living or family expenses.
  • Deductible expenses you can claim include:
    • Transportation – air, rail, bus and even the taxi from the airport or station to your lodging;
    • Mileage, if you’re driving (14 cents a mile); and
    • Lodging and meals.

Thanks for serving…the world is better with volunteers such as you!

While you likely don’t give up your time and energy to gain tax deductions, be sure to take them when you can. If you need help figuring your charitable or other deductions, contact the tax accountant team at Patrick & Robinson CPAs: or (904) 396-5400.

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