New Tax Law Changes Hit Truck Drivers Hard

Topic 24724 | Page 1

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DaveW's Comment
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Fleet drivers, like a lot of other company workers who have un-reimbursed expenses, and whose income is reported on a W-2, can no longer deduct their daily expenses of meals, cell-phones or other common expenses used in doing their jobs that were deductible until this year's new tax laws went into effect; which results in decreased refunds this year.

New tax law changes hit truck drivers hard

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Big T's Comment
member avatar

Companies can still offer the per diem to their employees though. Unfortunately at Swift if you're based out of California you're not eligible.

Per Diem:

Getting paid per diem means getting a portion of your salary paid to you without taxes taken out. It's technically classified as a meal and expense reimbursement.

Truck drivers and others who travel for a living get large tax deductions for meal expenses. The Government set up per diem pay as a way to reimburse some of the taxes you pay with each paycheck instead of making you wait until tax filing season.

Getting per diem pay means a driver will get a larger paycheck each week but a smaller tax return at tax time.

We have a ton of information on our wiki page on per diem pay

JoAnne EC's Comment
member avatar

From a not-yet-driver: you can't deduct your meals or cell phone for other jobs either. I used my cell phone at work and have to prepare / buy meals while I'm at work. Not sure why it would be expected that you COULD deduct these?

Chris M's Comment
member avatar

I brought home more money per week this year, and got back a larger refund.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

From a not-yet-driver: you can't deduct your meals or cell phone for other jobs either. I used my cell phone at work and have to prepare / buy meals while I'm at work. Not sure why it would be expected that you COULD deduct these?

Are you buying breakfast, lunch and dinner?

Remember the primary differentiator is living in the truck for days/weeks/months at a time vs. living at home and returning their every work day.

Big T's Comment
member avatar

This was not a special deduction for drivers. Before the law changed anyone traveling for work could deduct meal expenses.

In the tax law change they got rid of the deduction. For most it wasn't a big deal, but for drivers that can spend 300 plus days a year away from home it was. Tune of about $18k.

From a not-yet-driver: you can't deduct your meals or cell phone for other jobs either. I used my cell phone at work and have to prepare / buy meals while I'm at work. Not sure why it would be expected that you COULD deduct these?

Tractor Man's Comment
member avatar

Swift offers per diem pay. So between Per Diem, the new standard deduction of $12,000.00, and my pre tax deductions of my 401k, HSA, and health insurance benefits, my federal tax liability will be minimal. I'll see how it shakes out at the end of the year. I believe it will benefit my particular situation.

Per Diem:

Getting paid per diem means getting a portion of your salary paid to you without taxes taken out. It's technically classified as a meal and expense reimbursement.

Truck drivers and others who travel for a living get large tax deductions for meal expenses. The Government set up per diem pay as a way to reimburse some of the taxes you pay with each paycheck instead of making you wait until tax filing season.

Getting per diem pay means a driver will get a larger paycheck each week but a smaller tax return at tax time.

We have a ton of information on our wiki page on per diem pay

Tractor Man's Comment
member avatar

Companies can still offer the per diem to their employees though. Unfortunately at Swift if you're based out of California you're not eligible.

Big T, There is a work around to your situation.............MOVE OUT OF CALIFORNIA!

rofl-1.gifrofl-3.gifsmile.gif

Per Diem:

Getting paid per diem means getting a portion of your salary paid to you without taxes taken out. It's technically classified as a meal and expense reimbursement.

Truck drivers and others who travel for a living get large tax deductions for meal expenses. The Government set up per diem pay as a way to reimburse some of the taxes you pay with each paycheck instead of making you wait until tax filing season.

Getting per diem pay means a driver will get a larger paycheck each week but a smaller tax return at tax time.

We have a ton of information on our wiki page on per diem pay

JoAnne EC's Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

From a not-yet-driver: you can't deduct your meals or cell phone for other jobs either. I used my cell phone at work and have to prepare / buy meals while I'm at work. Not sure why it would be expected that you COULD deduct these?

double-quotes-end.png

Are you buying breakfast, lunch and dinner?

Remember the primary differentiator is living in the truck for days/weeks/months at a time vs. living at home and returning their every work day.

Nobody else is buying my meals =)

Big T's Comment
member avatar

Trust me I would but the women in charge (wife and daughter) had veto power lol.

double-quotes-start.png

Companies can still offer the per diem to their employees though. Unfortunately at Swift if you're based out of California you're not eligible.

double-quotes-end.png

Big T, There is a work around to your situation.............MOVE OUT OF CALIFORNIA!

rofl-1.gifrofl-3.gifsmile.gif

Per Diem:

Getting paid per diem means getting a portion of your salary paid to you without taxes taken out. It's technically classified as a meal and expense reimbursement.

Truck drivers and others who travel for a living get large tax deductions for meal expenses. The Government set up per diem pay as a way to reimburse some of the taxes you pay with each paycheck instead of making you wait until tax filing season.

Getting per diem pay means a driver will get a larger paycheck each week but a smaller tax return at tax time.

We have a ton of information on our wiki page on per diem pay

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