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Anyone Writing off their clothes?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Fashionslave, Apr 14, 2005.

  1. Fashionslave

    Fashionslave Senior member

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    Just wondering if anybody is actually writing off their finery,and if so,how? I'm in a profession where I need to wear a suit and have no clothing allowance from my employer.Therefore,are those Brionis deductable?? [​IMG]
     
  2. Ambulance Chaser

    Ambulance Chaser Senior member

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    Suits are not a deductible job-related expense.
     
  3. FIHTies

    FIHTies Senior member Affiliate Vendor

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  4. curt222

    curt222 Active Member

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    Agreed - it is very, very unlikely that you could deduct any clothing expenses. You'd have to check with your accountant to be sure, but deducting clothing is a sure fire way to get audited. I am not a tax lawyer (just a simple litigator), but my understanding of the tax code is that a suit would most likely never be an allowable deductible expense.
     
  5. j

    j Senior member Admin

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    From what I know it would have to be purpose built, i.e. pretty much useless for everyday off-work wear, or logoed, to be able to write it off. If you can wear it outside of work, you basically can't write it off.
     
  6. Ambulance Chaser

    Ambulance Chaser Senior member

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    Perhaps the tax man finally caught up with linux_pro and that's the reason he's MIA . . .
     
  7. hopkins_student

    hopkins_student Senior member

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    Was it Dakota_Rube that suggested writing nearly everything off because even if you get audited you will only be required to pay the taxes you were originally supposed to pay?
     
  8. Jill

    Jill Senior member

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    Disclaimer: I am not a tax attorney, CPA, nor do I play one on TV.

    My understanding is this:

    ~ If you need something exclusively for work and cannot / would not wear it for anything else, it may be deductible - "uniform expense" I think is the exact itemization.
    ~ If you are travelling for business, and have to buy new clothes (because luggage was lost, meeting attire changed at the last minute, etc) it is deductible.  Then again, I may just be confusing it with what my company calls "expensable" Note:  I wouldn't try this one very often.
    ~ If you are in the clothing business, and are required to wear your own clothing for business wear, you may write off the first of each new item for "Sample expense".  Again, I would do this judiciously.
    ~ Dry-cleaning may be deducted if on a business trip for more than x days.  Can't remember details.  5 days perhaps?
    ~ IF you're in the trade, you can deduct expense of magazine subscriptions, etc if the publication pertains to your business.

    That's all I can think of top of head.  But I would use these with great discretion unless you enjoy audits.
     
  9. johnnynorman3

    johnnynorman3 Senior member

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    I've never heard of that "emergency clothes purchase during business trip" thing. It makes some sense, but is tough to rectify with the general rule. Next time I go on a business trip, I'm going to be dressed in jeans, at which point I'll receive an emergency message that the decor has been changed to business formal.
     
  10. kabert

    kabert Senior member

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    Surely there's something about this on the IRS website.  In any case, my layman's understanding is that, in general, work clothes are not deductible.  I think there are very limited exceptions for:

    -- uniforms that are unique to the position and cannot double as non-work clothes and are required as a condition of employment.

    -- safety clothes/shoes.  E.g., hardhats, steel-toed boots, a fireman's coat/bib/boots.

    If you get audited and get caught, you'll not only owe back taxes, but will owe interest on the back taxes and will owe penalties too unless you can convince the IRS that you had reasonable cause for thinking the deduction was permitted.   Finally, aren't "unreimbursed employee business expenses" subject to deduction limitations on the Schedule A? -- If so, then you won't even get the benefit of the deduction even if you gave it a go if your income is above is high relative to your deductions.
     
  11. bry2000

    bry2000 Senior member

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    You can't. This topic has been discussed before either here or on AA. I believe Cuffthis, who is a CPA, wrote authoritatively on this.
     
  12. topcatny

    topcatny Senior member

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    My accountant has told me in no uncertain terms that you can not deduct clothing. My wife and I work in the clothing industry, so for us it would be job related, and we still can not deduct one penny.
     
  13. Ambulance Chaser

    Ambulance Chaser Senior member

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    Yep.  Having just done my taxes, I can say that your job-related deductions are limited to the difference between your expenses and 2% of your adjusted gross income.  Not that great.  If you want a monster deduction, buy a home.
     
  14. Renault78law

    Renault78law Senior member

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    i vaguely remember that you may deduct clothing that has a logo on it, but the deduction is classified as advertising. anyone?
     
  15. esquire.

    esquire. Senior member

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    You know, the scary thing is that Linux Pro insisted that it was perfectly legal and that his expensive, high powered accountant or CPA had cleared this. I can't believe any ethical CPA would have encouraged this. And, LP also made other dubious claims, based on the advice of his friends who were experts in their fields. That' why I couldn't believe anybody would seriously believe his claims about forex.

    I always wondered if those 'friends' were really friends of his. I don't want to be mean, but LP doesn't come off too well on the internet which he's admited so himself. I just wonder if maybe the internet wasn't the problem.
     
  16. Jill

    Jill Senior member

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    If it is a sample of your own line, which you are wearing to demo, it is. Gray area, perhaps, but perfectly legal. If you have a home-based business, selling refridgerators, then you are allowed one floor sample for the purposes of demo.

    Anyway, see your tax professional. I'll bow out now.
     
  17. Dakota rube

    Dakota rube Senior member

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    No, I don't believe I ever penned those words. IIRC the topic had delved into "fines" versus "penalties" with regard to underpayment of taxes. I stated that I was required to pay the tax plus a penalty (because I had technically underpaid my taxes for that year, plus interest on the underpayment. I am not now, nor have I ever been, an advocate of frivolous deductions.
     
  18. hopkins_student

    hopkins_student Senior member

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    So I'll be able to write off my lab coats? I wonder if anyone makes bespoke lab coats.
     
  19. aybojs

    aybojs Senior member

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    If anyone with relevant experience or knowledge can answer this, how common is it for retail clothing employees to be mandated to wear only the brand(s) of clothes their store carries? On the super low end, Abercrombie has garnered itself a negative reputation for having a (seemingly exceptional) policy to this effect, but I didn't know high end boutiques did this as well. How about single brand menswear retailers like Brooks Brothers?

    Just curious since I'm still in the process of frantically trying to get a retail sales job.

    As for the case CTGuy cited, it seems like a reasonable person would think the employer's policy would be valid cause for making a write off, at least because it provides a unusually strict industry-specific restriction that one wouldn't ordinarily see in your standard office dress code. But apparently government theft wins again.
     
  20. armscye

    armscye Senior member

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    I have been counseled by my accountant to hew to the "required for work and wearable nowhere else" rule. However, years back he approved my three-layer Nomex driving suit as deductible despite its $900 price tag, as a promotional item (company name on the back).

    There is a perhaps apocryphal story of actress Ann Margret writing off costumes and being told by the IRS that she could deduct only gowns in which she could dance, but not sit.
     

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