Per Diem Pay

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Special K, aka Kathy's Comment
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Why do companies do a per diem , what is the reasoning behind it? Kathyconfused.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

Brett Aquila's Comment
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Because truck drivers get a lot of tax write-offs, companies will often give you some of your pay tax-free. That way you bring home more money in each paycheck instead of paying a ton of taxes each week and then getting a pile of money back in your tax return at the end of the year.

In the end, it makes no difference. You'll bring home the same money after taxes each year. It's just a matter of how do you want it distributed? Do you want more bring-home pay in each check and have a small tax return at the end of the year (per diem pay), or do you want to bring home less pay in each check and get a huge tax return at the end of the year.

Most people choose per diem , but it really doesn't matter in the end.

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

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Special K, aka Kathy's Comment
member avatar

Ok thanks for letting me know, what kind of tax write offs, what kinds of reciepts do I need to keep?

Brett Aquila's Comment
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The only receipts you really need to keep are anything you buy or any services you pay for that are part of doing the job but don't get reimbursed. Things like tools you carry with you, extra clothing you buy for the job, laundry services, cell phone bills related to the job, software or hardware you buy for the truck (GPS systems, laptops, etc). Anything you buy or pay for that you need for the job but the company does not reimburse you for.

The one thing you do not need to keep receipts for is food. You will take the standard deduction that the Federal government offers which allows you somewhere around $35-$50 per day (or something like that) for food. It changes a bit from year to year and I can't remember the exact number.

Here is a quote from irs.gov:

Standard Meal Allowance

Generally, you can use the “standard meal allowance” method as an alternative to the actual cost method. It allows you to use a set amount for your daily meals and incidental expenses (M&IE), instead of keeping records of your actual costs. The set amount varies depending on where and when you travel. In this publication, “standard meal allowance” refers to the federal rate for M&IE, discussed later under Amount of standard meal allowance . If you use the standard meal allowance, you still must keep records to prove the time, place, and business purpose of your travel. See the recordkeeping rules for travel in chapter 5 .

When they say "you still must keep records to prove the time, place, and business purpose of your travel" - your logbook is what you'll use as proof of your time spent on the road.

You can find the entire article which includes links to other specifics here:

IRS Travel Allowances

Per Diem Pay For Truck Drivers Information

Logbook:

A written or electronic record of a driver's duty status which must be maintained at all times. The driver records the amount of time spent driving, on-duty not driving, in the sleeper berth, or off duty. The enforcement of the Hours Of Service Rules (HOS) are based upon the entries put in a driver's logbook.

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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