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H R Block Tax Preparation

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H R Block Tax Preparation

H r block tax preparation 1. H r block tax preparation   Travel Table of Contents Traveling Away From HomeTax Home Tax Home Different From Family Home Temporary Assignment or Job What Travel Expenses Are Deductible?Employee. H r block tax preparation Business associate. H r block tax preparation Bona fide business purpose. H r block tax preparation Meals Travel in the United States Travel Outside the United States Luxury Water Travel Conventions If you temporarily travel away from your tax home, you can use this chapter to determine if you have deductible travel expenses. H r block tax preparation This chapter discusses: Traveling away from home, Temporary assignment or job, and What travel expenses are deductible. H r block tax preparation It also discusses the standard meal allowance, rules for travel inside and outside the United States, luxury water travel, and deductible convention expenses. H r block tax preparation Travel expenses defined. H r block tax preparation   For tax purposes, travel expenses are the ordinary and necessary expenses of traveling away from home for your business, profession, or job. H r block tax preparation   An ordinary expense is one that is common and accepted in your trade or business. H r block tax preparation A necessary expense is one that is helpful and appropriate for your business. H r block tax preparation An expense does not have to be required to be considered necessary. H r block tax preparation   You will find examples of deductible travel expenses in Table 1-1 , later. H r block tax preparation Traveling Away From Home You are traveling away from home if: Your duties require you to be away from the general area of your tax home (defined later) substantially longer than an ordinary day's work, and You need to sleep or rest to meet the demands of your work while away from home. H r block tax preparation This rest requirement is not satisfied by merely napping in your car. H r block tax preparation You do not have to be away from your tax home for a whole day or from dusk to dawn as long as your relief from duty is long enough to get necessary sleep or rest. H r block tax preparation Example 1. H r block tax preparation You are a railroad conductor. H r block tax preparation You leave your home terminal on a regularly scheduled round-trip run between two cities and return home 16 hours later. H r block tax preparation During the run, you have 6 hours off at your turnaround point where you eat two meals and rent a hotel room to get necessary sleep before starting the return trip. H r block tax preparation You are considered to be away from home. H r block tax preparation Example 2. H r block tax preparation You are a truck driver. H r block tax preparation You leave your terminal and return to it later the same day. H r block tax preparation You get an hour off at your turnaround point to eat. H r block tax preparation Because you are not off to get necessary sleep and the brief time off is not an adequate rest period, you are not traveling away from home. H r block tax preparation Members of the Armed Forces. H r block tax preparation   If you are a member of the U. H r block tax preparation S. H r block tax preparation Armed Forces on a permanent duty assignment overseas, you are not traveling away from home. H r block tax preparation You cannot deduct your expenses for meals and lodging. H r block tax preparation You cannot deduct these expenses even if you have to maintain a home in the United States for your family members who are not allowed to accompany you overseas. H r block tax preparation If you are transferred from one permanent duty station to another, you may have deductible moving expenses, which are explained in Publication 521, Moving Expenses. H r block tax preparation   A naval officer assigned to permanent duty aboard a ship that has regular eating and living facilities has a tax home (explained next) aboard the ship for travel expense purposes. H r block tax preparation Tax Home To determine whether you are traveling away from home, you must first determine the location of your tax home. H r block tax preparation Generally, your tax home is your regular place of business or post of duty, regardless of where you maintain your family home. H r block tax preparation It includes the entire city or general area in which your business or work is located. H r block tax preparation If you have more than one regular place of business, your tax home is your main place of business. H r block tax preparation See Main place of business or work , later. H r block tax preparation If you do not have a regular or a main place of business because of the nature of your work, then your tax home may be the place where you regularly live. H r block tax preparation See No main place of business or work , later. H r block tax preparation If you do not have a regular or main place of business or post of duty and there is no place where you regularly live, you are considered an itinerant (a transient) and your tax home is wherever you work. H r block tax preparation As an itinerant, you cannot claim a travel expense deduction because you are never considered to be traveling away from home. H r block tax preparation Main place of business or work. H r block tax preparation   If you have more than one place of work, consider the following when determining which one is your main place of business or work. H r block tax preparation The total time you ordinarily spend in each place. H r block tax preparation The level of your business activity in each place. H r block tax preparation Whether your income from each place is significant or insignificant. H r block tax preparation Example. H r block tax preparation You live in Cincinnati where you have a seasonal job for 8 months each year and earn $40,000. H r block tax preparation You work the other 4 months in Miami, also at a seasonal job, and earn $15,000. H r block tax preparation Cincinnati is your main place of work because you spend most of your time there and earn most of your income there. H r block tax preparation No main place of business or work. H r block tax preparation   You may have a tax home even if you do not have a regular or main place of work. H r block tax preparation Your tax home may be the home where you regularly live. H r block tax preparation Factors used to determine tax home. H r block tax preparation   If you do not have a regular or main place of business or work, use the following three factors to determine where your tax home is. H r block tax preparation You perform part of your business in the area of your main home and use that home for lodging while doing business in the area. H r block tax preparation You have living expenses at your main home that you duplicate because your business requires you to be away from that home. H r block tax preparation You have not abandoned the area in which both your historical place of lodging and your claimed main home are located; you have a member or members of your family living at your main home; or you often use that home for lodging. H r block tax preparation   If you satisfy all three factors, your tax home is the home where you regularly live. H r block tax preparation If you satisfy only two factors, you may have a tax home depending on all the facts and circumstances. H r block tax preparation If you satisfy only one factor, you are an itinerant; your tax home is wherever you work and you cannot deduct travel expenses. H r block tax preparation Example 1. H r block tax preparation You are single and live in Boston in an apartment you rent. H r block tax preparation You have worked for your employer in Boston for a number of years. H r block tax preparation Your employer enrolls you in a 12-month executive training program. H r block tax preparation You do not expect to return to work in Boston after you complete your training. H r block tax preparation During your training, you do not do any work in Boston. H r block tax preparation Instead, you receive classroom and on-the-job training throughout the United States. H r block tax preparation You keep your apartment in Boston and return to it frequently. H r block tax preparation You use your apartment to conduct your personal business. H r block tax preparation You also keep up your community contacts in Boston. H r block tax preparation When you complete your training, you are transferred to Los Angeles. H r block tax preparation You do not satisfy factor (1) because you did not work in Boston. H r block tax preparation You satisfy factor (2) because you had duplicate living expenses. H r block tax preparation You also satisfy factor (3) because you did not abandon your apartment in Boston as your main home, you kept your community contacts, and you frequently returned to live in your apartment. H r block tax preparation Therefore, you have a tax home in Boston. H r block tax preparation Example 2. H r block tax preparation You are an outside salesperson with a sales territory covering several states. H r block tax preparation Your employer's main office is in Newark, but you do not conduct any business there. H r block tax preparation Your work assignments are temporary, and you have no way of knowing where your future assignments will be located. H r block tax preparation You have a room in your married sister's house in Dayton. H r block tax preparation You stay there for one or two weekends a year, but you do no work in the area. H r block tax preparation You do not pay your sister for the use of the room. H r block tax preparation You do not satisfy any of the three factors listed earlier. H r block tax preparation You are an itinerant and have no tax home. H r block tax preparation Tax Home Different From Family Home If you (and your family) do not live at your tax home (defined earlier), you cannot deduct the cost of traveling between your tax home and your family home. H r block tax preparation You also cannot deduct the cost of meals and lodging while at your tax home. H r block tax preparation See Example 1 , later. H r block tax preparation If you are working temporarily in the same city where you and your family live, you may be considered as traveling away from home. H r block tax preparation See Example 2 , later. H r block tax preparation Example 1. H r block tax preparation You are a truck driver and you and your family live in Tucson. H r block tax preparation You are employed by a trucking firm that has its terminal in Phoenix. H r block tax preparation At the end of your long runs, you return to your home terminal in Phoenix and spend one night there before returning home. H r block tax preparation You cannot deduct any expenses you have for meals and lodging in Phoenix or the cost of traveling from Phoenix to Tucson. H r block tax preparation This is because Phoenix is your tax home. H r block tax preparation Example 2. H r block tax preparation Your family home is in Pittsburgh, where you work 12 weeks a year. H r block tax preparation The rest of the year you work for the same employer in Baltimore. H r block tax preparation In Baltimore, you eat in restaurants and sleep in a rooming house. H r block tax preparation Your salary is the same whether you are in Pittsburgh or Baltimore. H r block tax preparation Because you spend most of your working time and earn most of your salary in Baltimore, that city is your tax home. H r block tax preparation You cannot deduct any expenses you have for meals and lodging there. H r block tax preparation However, when you return to work in Pittsburgh, you are away from your tax home even though you stay at your family home. H r block tax preparation You can deduct the cost of your round trip between Baltimore and Pittsburgh. H r block tax preparation You can also deduct your part of your family's living expenses for meals and lodging while you are living and working in Pittsburgh. H r block tax preparation Temporary Assignment or Job You may regularly work at your tax home and also work at another location. H r block tax preparation It may not be practical to return to your tax home from this other location at the end of each work day. H r block tax preparation Temporary assignment vs. H r block tax preparation indefinite assignment. H r block tax preparation   If your assignment or job away from your main place of work is temporary, your tax home does not change. H r block tax preparation You are considered to be away from home for the whole period you are away from your main place of work. H r block tax preparation You can deduct your travel expenses if they otherwise qualify for deduction. H r block tax preparation Generally, a temporary assignment in a single location is one that is realistically expected to last (and does in fact last) for 1 year or less. H r block tax preparation    However, if your assignment or job is indefinite, the location of the assignment or job becomes your new tax home and you cannot deduct your travel expenses while there. H r block tax preparation An assignment or job in a single location is considered indefinite if it is realistically expected to last for more than 1 year, whether or not it actually lasts for more than 1 year. H r block tax preparation   If your assignment is indefinite, you must include in your income any amounts you receive from your employer for living expenses, even if they are called travel allowances and you account to your employer for them. H r block tax preparation You may be able to deduct the cost of relocating to your new tax home as a moving expense. H r block tax preparation See Publication 521 for more information. H r block tax preparation Exception for federal crime investigations or prosecutions. H r block tax preparation   If you are a federal employee participating in a federal crime investigation or prosecution, you are not subject to the 1-year rule. H r block tax preparation This means you may be able to deduct travel expenses even if you are away from your tax home for more than 1 year provided you meet the other requirements for deductibility. H r block tax preparation   For you to qualify, the Attorney General (or his or her designee) must certify that you are traveling: For the federal government, In a temporary duty status, and To investigate, prosecute, or provide support services for the investigation or prosecution of a federal crime. H r block tax preparation Determining temporary or indefinite. H r block tax preparation   You must determine whether your assignment is temporary or indefinite when you start work. H r block tax preparation If you expect an assignment or job to last for 1 year or less, it is temporary unless there are facts and circumstances that indicate otherwise. H r block tax preparation An assignment or job that is initially temporary may become indefinite due to changed circumstances. H r block tax preparation A series of assignments to the same location, all for short periods but that together cover a long period, may be considered an indefinite assignment. H r block tax preparation   The following examples illustrate whether an assignment or job is temporary or indefinite. H r block tax preparation Example 1. H r block tax preparation You are a construction worker. H r block tax preparation You live and regularly work in Los Angeles. H r block tax preparation You are a member of a trade union in Los Angeles that helps you get work in the Los Angeles area. H r block tax preparation Your tax home is Los Angeles. H r block tax preparation Because of a shortage of work, you took a job on a construction project in Fresno. H r block tax preparation Your job was scheduled to end in 8 months. H r block tax preparation The job actually lasted 10 months. H r block tax preparation You realistically expected the job in Fresno to last 8 months. H r block tax preparation The job actually did last less than 1 year. H r block tax preparation The job is temporary and your tax home is still in Los Angeles. H r block tax preparation Example 2. H r block tax preparation The facts are the same as in Example 1, except that you realistically expected the work in Fresno to last 18 months. H r block tax preparation The job actually was completed in 10 months. H r block tax preparation Your job in Fresno is indefinite because you realistically expected the work to last longer than 1 year, even though it actually lasted less than 1 year. H r block tax preparation You cannot deduct any travel expenses you had in Fresno because Fresno became your tax home. H r block tax preparation Example 3. H r block tax preparation The facts are the same as in Example 1, except that you realistically expected the work in Fresno to last 9 months. H r block tax preparation After 8 months, however, you were asked to remain for 7 more months (for a total actual stay of 15 months). H r block tax preparation Initially, you realistically expected the job in Fresno to last for only 9 months. H r block tax preparation However, due to changed circumstances occurring after 8 months, it was no longer realistic for you to expect that the job in Fresno would last for 1 year or less. H r block tax preparation You can only deduct your travel expenses for the first 8 months. H r block tax preparation You cannot deduct any travel expenses you had after that time because Fresno became your tax home when the job became indefinite. H r block tax preparation Going home on days off. H r block tax preparation   If you go back to your tax home from a temporary assignment on your days off, you are not considered away from home while you are in your hometown. H r block tax preparation You cannot deduct the cost of your meals and lodging there. H r block tax preparation However, you can deduct your travel expenses, including meals and lodging, while traveling between your temporary place of work and your tax home. H r block tax preparation You can claim these expenses up to the amount it would have cost you to stay at your temporary place of work. H r block tax preparation   If you keep your hotel room during your visit home, you can deduct the cost of your hotel room. H r block tax preparation In addition, you can deduct your expenses of returning home up to the amount you would have spent for meals had you stayed at your temporary place of work. H r block tax preparation Probationary work period. H r block tax preparation   If you take a job that requires you to move, with the understanding that you will keep the job if your work is satisfactory during a probationary period, the job is indefinite. H r block tax preparation You cannot deduct any of your expenses for meals and lodging during the probationary period. H r block tax preparation What Travel Expenses Are Deductible? Once you have determined that you are traveling away from your tax home, you can determine what travel expenses are deductible. H r block tax preparation You can deduct ordinary and necessary expenses you have when you travel away from home on business. H r block tax preparation The type of expense you can deduct depends on the facts and your circumstances. H r block tax preparation Table 1-1 summarizes travel expenses you may be able to deduct. H r block tax preparation You may have other deductible travel expenses that are not covered there, depending on the facts and your circumstances. H r block tax preparation When you travel away from home on business, you should keep records of all the expenses you have and any advances you receive from your employer. H r block tax preparation You can use a log, diary, notebook, or any other written record to keep track of your expenses. H r block tax preparation The types of expenses you need to record, along with supporting documentation, are described in Table 5-1 (see chapter 5). H r block tax preparation Separating costs. H r block tax preparation   If you have one expense that includes the costs of meals, entertainment, and other services (such as lodging or transportation), you must allocate that expense between the cost of meals and entertainment and the cost of other services. H r block tax preparation You must have a reasonable basis for making this allocation. H r block tax preparation For example, you must allocate your expenses if a hotel includes one or more meals in its room charge. H r block tax preparation Travel expenses for another individual. H r block tax preparation    If a spouse, dependent, or other individual goes with you (or your employee) on a business trip or to a business convention, you generally cannot deduct his or her travel expenses. H r block tax preparation Employee. H r block tax preparation   You can deduct the travel expenses of someone who goes with you if that person: Is your employee, Has a bona fide business purpose for the travel, and Would otherwise be allowed to deduct the travel expenses. H r block tax preparation Business associate. H r block tax preparation   If a business associate travels with you and meets the conditions in (2) and (3), earlier, you can deduct the travel expenses you have for that person. H r block tax preparation A business associate is someone with whom you could reasonably expect to actively conduct business. H r block tax preparation A business associate can be a current or prospective (likely to become) customer, client, supplier, employee, agent, partner, or professional advisor. H r block tax preparation Bona fide business purpose. H r block tax preparation   A bona fide business purpose exists if you can prove a real business purpose for the individual's presence. H r block tax preparation Incidental services, such as typing notes or assisting in entertaining customers, are not enough to make the expenses deductible. H r block tax preparation Table 1-1. H r block tax preparation Travel Expenses You Can Deduct   This chart summarizes expenses you can deduct when you travel away from home for business purposes. H r block tax preparation IF you have expenses for. H r block tax preparation . H r block tax preparation . H r block tax preparation THEN you can deduct the cost of. H r block tax preparation . H r block tax preparation . H r block tax preparation transportation travel by airplane, train, bus, or car between your home and your business destination. H r block tax preparation If you were provided with a free ticket or you are riding free as a result of a frequent traveler or similar program, your cost is zero. H r block tax preparation If you travel by ship, see Luxury Water Travel and Cruise Ships (under Conventions) for additional rules and limits. H r block tax preparation taxi, commuter bus, and airport limousine fares for these and other types of transportation that take you between: The airport or station and your hotel, and The hotel and the work location of your customers or clients, your business meeting place, or your temporary work location. H r block tax preparation baggage and shipping sending baggage and sample or display material between your regular and temporary work locations. H r block tax preparation car operating and maintaining your car when traveling away from home on business. H r block tax preparation You can deduct actual expenses or the standard mileage rate, as well as business-related tolls and parking. H r block tax preparation If you rent a car while away from home on business, you can deduct only the business-use portion of the expenses. H r block tax preparation lodging and meals your lodging and meals if your business trip is overnight or long enough that you need to stop for sleep or rest to properly perform your duties. H r block tax preparation Meals include amounts spent for food, beverages, taxes, and related tips. H r block tax preparation See Meals for additional rules and limits. H r block tax preparation cleaning dry cleaning and laundry. H r block tax preparation telephone business calls while on your business trip. H r block tax preparation This includes business communication by fax machine or other communication devices. H r block tax preparation tips tips you pay for any expenses in this chart. H r block tax preparation other other similar ordinary and necessary expenses related to your business travel. H r block tax preparation These expenses might include transportation to or from a business meal, public stenographer's fees, computer rental fees, and operating and maintaining a house trailer. H r block tax preparation Example. H r block tax preparation Jerry drives to Chicago on business and takes his wife, Linda, with him. H r block tax preparation Linda is not Jerry's employee. H r block tax preparation Linda occasionally types notes, performs similar services, and accompanies Jerry to luncheons and dinners. H r block tax preparation The performance of these services does not establish that her presence on the trip is necessary to the conduct of Jerry's business. H r block tax preparation Her expenses are not deductible. H r block tax preparation Jerry pays $199 a day for a double room. H r block tax preparation A single room costs $149 a day. H r block tax preparation He can deduct the total cost of driving his car to and from Chicago, but only $149 a day for his hotel room. H r block tax preparation If he uses public transportation, he can deduct only his fare. H r block tax preparation Meals You can deduct the cost of meals in either of the following situations. H r block tax preparation It is necessary for you to stop for substantial sleep or rest to properly perform your duties while traveling away from home on business. H r block tax preparation The meal is business-related entertainment. H r block tax preparation Business-related entertainment is discussed in chapter 2 . H r block tax preparation The following discussion deals only with meals that are not business-related entertainment. H r block tax preparation Lavish or extravagant. H r block tax preparation   You cannot deduct expenses for meals that are lavish or extravagant. H r block tax preparation An expense is not considered lavish or extravagant if it is reasonable based on the facts and circumstances. H r block tax preparation Expenses will not be disallowed merely because they are more than a fixed dollar amount or take place at deluxe restaurants, hotels, nightclubs, or resorts. H r block tax preparation 50% limit on meals. H r block tax preparation   You can figure your meals expense using either of the following methods. H r block tax preparation Actual cost. H r block tax preparation The standard meal allowance. H r block tax preparation Both of these methods are explained below. H r block tax preparation But, regardless of the method you use, you generally can deduct only 50% of the unreimbursed cost of your meals. H r block tax preparation   If you are reimbursed for the cost of your meals, how you apply the 50% limit depends on whether your employer's reimbursement plan was accountable or nonaccountable. H r block tax preparation If you are not reimbursed, the 50% limit applies whether the unreimbursed meal expense is for business travel or business entertainment. H r block tax preparation Chapter 2 discusses the 50% Limit in more detail, and chapter 6 discusses accountable and nonaccountable plans. H r block tax preparation Actual Cost You can use the actual cost of your meals to figure the amount of your expense before reimbursement and application of the 50% deduction limit. H r block tax preparation If you use this method, you must keep records of your actual cost. H r block tax preparation Standard Meal Allowance Generally, you can use the “standard meal allowance” method as an alternative to the actual cost method. H r block tax preparation 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. H r block tax preparation The set amount varies depending on where and when you travel. H r block tax preparation In this publication, “standard meal allowance” refers to the federal rate for M&IE, discussed later under Amount of standard meal allowance . H r block tax preparation If you use the standard meal allowance, you still must keep records to prove the time, place, and business purpose of your travel. H r block tax preparation See the recordkeeping rules for travel in chapter 5 . H r block tax preparation Incidental expenses. H r block tax preparation   The term “incidental expenses” means fees and tips given to porters, baggage carriers, hotel staff, and staff on ships. H r block tax preparation   Incidental expenses do not include expenses for laundry, cleaning and pressing of clothing, lodging taxes, costs of telegrams or telephone calls, transportation between places of lodging or business and places where meals are taken, or the mailing cost of filing travel vouchers and paying employer-sponsored charge card billings. H r block tax preparation Incidental-expenses-only method. H r block tax preparation   You can use an optional method (instead of actual cost) for deducting incidental expenses only. H r block tax preparation The amount of the deduction is $5 a day. H r block tax preparation You can use this method only if you did not pay or incur any meal expenses. H r block tax preparation You cannot use this method on any day that you use the standard meal allowance. H r block tax preparation This method is subject to the proration rules for partial days. H r block tax preparation See Travel for days you depart and return , later in this chapter. H r block tax preparation Note. H r block tax preparation The incidental-expenses-only method is not subject to the 50% limit discussed below. H r block tax preparation Federal employees should refer to the Federal Travel Regulations at www. H r block tax preparation gsa. H r block tax preparation gov. H r block tax preparation Find the “Most Requested Links” on the upper left and click on “Regulations: FAR, FMR, FTR” for Federal Travel Regulation (FTR) for changes affecting claims for reimbursement. H r block tax preparation 50% limit may apply. H r block tax preparation   If you use the standard meal allowance method for meal expenses and you are not reimbursed or you are reimbursed under a nonaccountable plan, you can generally deduct only 50% of the standard meal allowance. H r block tax preparation If you are reimbursed under an accountable plan and you are deducting amounts that are more than your reimbursements, you can deduct only 50% of the excess amount. H r block tax preparation The 50% limit is discussed in more detail in chapter 2, and accountable and nonaccountable plans are discussed in chapter 6. H r block tax preparation There is no optional standard lodging amount similar to the standard meal allowance. H r block tax preparation Your allowable lodging expense deduction is your actual cost. H r block tax preparation Who can use the standard meal allowance. H r block tax preparation   You can use the standard meal allowance whether you are an employee or self-employed, and whether or not you are reimbursed for your traveling expenses. H r block tax preparation Use of the standard meal allowance for other travel. H r block tax preparation   You can use the standard meal allowance to figure your meal expenses when you travel in connection with investment and other income-producing property. H r block tax preparation You can also use it to figure your meal expenses when you travel for qualifying educational purposes. H r block tax preparation You cannot use the standard meal allowance to figure the cost of your meals when you travel for medical or charitable purposes. H r block tax preparation Amount of standard meal allowance. H r block tax preparation   The standard meal allowance is the federal M&IE rate. H r block tax preparation For travel in 2013, the rate for most small localities in the United States is $46 a day. H r block tax preparation    Most major cities and many other localities in the United States are designated as high-cost areas, qualifying for higher standard meal allowances. H r block tax preparation    You can find this information (organized by state) on the Internet at www. H r block tax preparation gsa. H r block tax preparation gov/perdiem. H r block tax preparation Enter a zip code or select a city and state for the per diem rates for the current fiscal year. H r block tax preparation Per diem rates for prior fiscal years are available by using the drop down menu under “Search by State. H r block tax preparation ”   Per diem rates are listed by the Federal government's fiscal year which runs from October 1 to September 30. H r block tax preparation You can choose to use the rates from the 2013 fiscal year per diem tables or the rates from the 2014 fiscal year tables, but you must consistently use the same tables for all travel you are reporting on your income tax return for the year. H r block tax preparation   If you travel to more than one location in one day, use the rate in effect for the area where you stop for sleep or rest. H r block tax preparation If you work in the transportation industry, however, see Special rate for transportation workers , later. H r block tax preparation Standard meal allowance for areas outside the continental United States. H r block tax preparation   The standard meal allowance rates above do not apply to travel in Alaska, Hawaii, or any other location outside the continental United States. H r block tax preparation The Department of Defense establishes per diem rates for Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, Midway, the Northern Mariana Islands, the U. H r block tax preparation S. H r block tax preparation Virgin Islands, Wake Island, and other non-foreign areas outside the continental United States. H r block tax preparation The Department of State establishes per diem rates for all other foreign areas. H r block tax preparation    You can access per diem rates for non-foreign areas outside the continental United States at: www. H r block tax preparation defensetravel. H r block tax preparation dod. H r block tax preparation mil/site/perdiemCalc. H r block tax preparation cfm. H r block tax preparation You can access all other foreign per diem rates at: www. H r block tax preparation state. H r block tax preparation gov/travel/. H r block tax preparation Click on “Travel Per Diem Allowances for Foreign Areas,” under “Foreign Per Diem Rates” to obtain the latest foreign per diem rates. H r block tax preparation Special rate for transportation workers. H r block tax preparation   You can use a special standard meal allowance if you work in the transportation industry. H r block tax preparation You are in the transportation industry if your work: Directly involves moving people or goods by airplane, barge, bus, ship, train, or truck, and Regularly requires you to travel away from home and, during any single trip, usually involves travel to areas eligible for different standard meal allowance rates. H r block tax preparation If this applies to you, you can claim a standard meal allowance of $59 a day ($65 for travel outside the continental United States). H r block tax preparation   Using the special rate for transportation workers eliminates the need for you to determine the standard meal allowance for every area where you stop for sleep or rest. H r block tax preparation If you choose to use the special rate for any trip, you must use the special rate (and not use the regular standard meal allowance rates) for all trips you take that year. H r block tax preparation Travel for days you depart and return. H r block tax preparation   For both the day you depart for and the day you return from a business trip, you must prorate the standard meal allowance (figure a reduced amount for each day). H r block tax preparation You can do so by one of two methods. H r block tax preparation Method 1: You can claim 3/4 of the standard meal allowance. H r block tax preparation Method 2: You can prorate using any method that you consistently apply and that is in accordance with reasonable business practice. H r block tax preparation Example. H r block tax preparation Jen is employed in New Orleans as a convention planner. H r block tax preparation In March, her employer sent her on a 3-day trip to Washington, DC, to attend a planning seminar. H r block tax preparation She left her home in New Orleans at 10 a. H r block tax preparation m. H r block tax preparation on Wednesday and arrived in Washington, DC, at 5:30 p. H r block tax preparation m. H r block tax preparation After spending two nights there, she flew back to New Orleans on Friday and arrived back home at 8:00 p. H r block tax preparation m. H r block tax preparation Jen's employer gave her a flat amount to cover her expenses and included it with her wages. H r block tax preparation Under Method 1, Jen can claim 2½ days of the standard meal allowance for Washington, DC: 3/4 of the daily rate for Wednesday and Friday (the days she departed and returned), and the full daily rate for Thursday. H r block tax preparation Under Method 2, Jen could also use any method that she applies consistently and that is in accordance with reasonable business practice. H r block tax preparation For example, she could claim 3 days of the standard meal allowance even though a federal employee would have to use Method 1 and be limited to only 2½ days. H r block tax preparation Travel in the United States The following discussion applies to travel in the United States. H r block tax preparation For this purpose, the United States includes the 50 states and the District of Columbia. H r block tax preparation The treatment of your travel expenses depends on how much of your trip was business related and on how much of your trip occurred within the United States. H r block tax preparation See Part of Trip Outside the United States , later. H r block tax preparation Trip Primarily for Business You can deduct all of your travel expenses if your trip was entirely business related. H r block tax preparation If your trip was primarily for business and, while at your business destination, you extended your stay for a vacation, made a personal side trip, or had other personal activities, you can deduct only your business-related travel expenses. H r block tax preparation These expenses include the travel costs of getting to and from your business destination and any business-related expenses at your business destination. H r block tax preparation Example. H r block tax preparation You work in Atlanta and take a business trip to New Orleans in May. H r block tax preparation Your business travel totals 850 miles round trip. H r block tax preparation On your way, you stop in Mobile to visit your parents. H r block tax preparation You spend $2,120 for the 9 days you are away from home for travel, meals, lodging, and other travel expenses. H r block tax preparation If you had not stopped in Mobile, you would have been gone only 6 days, and your total cost would have been $1,820. H r block tax preparation You can deduct $1,820 for your trip, including the cost of round-trip transportation to and from New Orleans. H r block tax preparation The deduction for your meals is subject to the 50% limit on meals mentioned earlier. H r block tax preparation Trip Primarily for Personal Reasons If your trip was primarily for personal reasons, such as a vacation, the entire cost of the trip is a nondeductible personal expense. H r block tax preparation However, you can deduct any expenses you have while at your destination that are directly related to your business. H r block tax preparation A trip to a resort or on a cruise ship may be a vacation even if the promoter advertises that it is primarily for business. H r block tax preparation The scheduling of incidental business activities during a trip, such as viewing videotapes or attending lectures dealing with general subjects, will not change what is really a vacation into a business trip. H r block tax preparation Part of Trip Outside the United States If part of your trip is outside the United States, use the rules described later in this chapter under Travel Outside the United States for that part of the trip. H r block tax preparation For the part of your trip that is inside the United States, use the rules for travel in the United States. H r block tax preparation Travel outside the United States does not include travel from one point in the United States to another point in the United States. H r block tax preparation The following discussion can help you determine whether your trip was entirely within the United States. H r block tax preparation Public transportation. H r block tax preparation   If you travel by public transportation, any place in the United States where that vehicle makes a scheduled stop is a point in the United States. H r block tax preparation Once the vehicle leaves the last scheduled stop in the United States on its way to a point outside the United States, you apply the rules under Travel Outside the United States . H r block tax preparation Example. H r block tax preparation You fly from New York to Puerto Rico with a scheduled stop in Miami. H r block tax preparation You return to New York nonstop. H r block tax preparation The flight from New York to Miami is in the United States, so only the flight from Miami to Puerto Rico is outside the United States. H r block tax preparation Because there are no scheduled stops between Puerto Rico and New York, all of the return trip is outside the United States. H r block tax preparation Private car. H r block tax preparation   Travel by private car in the United States is travel between points in the United States, even though you are on your way to a destination outside the United States. H r block tax preparation Example. H r block tax preparation You travel by car from Denver to Mexico City and return. H r block tax preparation Your travel from Denver to the border and from the border back to Denver is travel in the United States, and the rules in this section apply. H r block tax preparation The rules under Travel Outside the United States apply to your trip from the border to Mexico City and back to the border. H r block tax preparation Travel Outside the United States If any part of your business travel is outside the United States, some of your deductions for the cost of getting to and from your destination may be limited. H r block tax preparation For this purpose, the United States includes the 50 states and the District of Columbia. H r block tax preparation How much of your travel expenses you can deduct depends in part upon how much of your trip outside the United States was business related. H r block tax preparation Travel Entirely for Business or Considered Entirely for Business You can deduct all your travel expenses of getting to and from your business destination if your trip is entirely for business or considered entirely for business. H r block tax preparation Travel entirely for business. H r block tax preparation   If you travel outside the United States and you spend the entire time on business activities, you can deduct all of your travel expenses. H r block tax preparation Travel considered entirely for business. H r block tax preparation   Even if you did not spend your entire time on business activities, your trip is considered entirely for business if you meet at least one of the following four exceptions. H r block tax preparation Exception 1 - No substantial control. H r block tax preparation   Your trip is considered entirely for business if you did not have substantial control over arranging the trip. H r block tax preparation The fact that you control the timing of your trip does not, by itself, mean that you have substantial control over arranging your trip. H r block tax preparation   You do not have substantial control over your trip if you: Are an employee who was reimbursed or paid a travel expense allowance, and Are not related to your employer, or Are not a managing executive. H r block tax preparation    “Related to your employer” is defined later in chapter 6 under Per Diem and Car Allowances . H r block tax preparation   A “managing executive” is an employee who has the authority and responsibility, without being subject to the veto of another, to decide on the need for the business travel. H r block tax preparation   A self-employed person generally has substantial control over arranging business trips. H r block tax preparation Exception 2 - Outside United States no more than a week. H r block tax preparation   Your trip is considered entirely for business if you were outside the United States for a week or less, combining business and nonbusiness activities. H r block tax preparation One week means 7 consecutive days. H r block tax preparation In counting the days, do not count the day you leave the United States, but do count the day you return to the United States. H r block tax preparation Example. H r block tax preparation You traveled to Brussels primarily for business. H r block tax preparation You left Denver on Tuesday and flew to New York. H r block tax preparation On Wednesday, you flew from New York to Brussels, arriving the next morning. H r block tax preparation On Thursday and Friday, you had business discussions, and from Saturday until Tuesday, you were sightseeing. H r block tax preparation You flew back to New York, arriving Wednesday afternoon. H r block tax preparation On Thursday, you flew back to Denver. H r block tax preparation Although you were away from your home in Denver for more than a week, you were not outside the United States for more than a week. H r block tax preparation This is because the day you depart does not count as a day outside the United States. H r block tax preparation You can deduct your cost of the round-trip flight between Denver and Brussels. H r block tax preparation You can also deduct the cost of your stay in Brussels for Thursday and Friday while you conducted business. H r block tax preparation However, you cannot deduct the cost of your stay in Brussels from Saturday through Tuesday because those days were spent on nonbusiness activities. H r block tax preparation Exception 3 - Less than 25% of time on personal activities. H r block tax preparation   Your trip is considered entirely for business if: You were outside the United States for more than a week, and You spent less than 25% of the total time you were outside the United States on nonbusiness activities. H r block tax preparation For this purpose, count both the day your trip began and the day it ended. H r block tax preparation Example. H r block tax preparation You flew from Seattle to Tokyo, where you spent 14 days on business and 5 days on personal matters. H r block tax preparation You then flew back to Seattle. H r block tax preparation You spent 1 day flying in each direction. H r block tax preparation Because only 5/21 (less than 25%) of your total time abroad was for nonbusiness activities, you can deduct as travel expenses what it would have cost you to make the trip if you had not engaged in any nonbusiness activity. H r block tax preparation The amount you can deduct is the cost of the round-trip plane fare and 16 days of meals (subject to the 50% limit), lodging, and other related expenses. H r block tax preparation Exception 4 - Vacation not a major consideration. H r block tax preparation   Your trip is considered entirely for business if you can establish that a personal vacation was not a major consideration, even if you have substantial control over arranging the trip. H r block tax preparation Travel Primarily for Business If you travel outside the United States primarily for business but spend some of your time on other activities, you generally cannot deduct all of your travel expenses. H r block tax preparation You can only deduct the business portion of your cost of getting to and from your destination. H r block tax preparation You must allocate the costs between your business and other activities to determine your deductible amount. H r block tax preparation See Travel allocation rules , later. H r block tax preparation You do not have to allocate your travel expenses if you meet one of the four exceptions listed earlier under Travel considered entirely for business . H r block tax preparation In those cases, you can deduct the total cost of getting to and from your destination. H r block tax preparation Travel allocation rules. H r block tax preparation   If your trip outside the United States was primarily for business, you must allocate your travel time on a day-to-day basis between business days and nonbusiness days. H r block tax preparation The days you depart from and return to the United States are both counted as days outside the United States. H r block tax preparation   To figure the deductible amount of your round-trip travel expenses, use the following fraction. H r block tax preparation The numerator (top number) is the total number of business days outside the United States. H r block tax preparation The denominator (bottom number) is the total number of business and nonbusiness days of travel. H r block tax preparation Counting business days. H r block tax preparation   Your business days include transportation days, days your presence was required, days you spent on business, and certain weekends and holidays. H r block tax preparation Transportation day. H r block tax preparation   Count as a business day any day you spend traveling to or from a business destination. H r block tax preparation However, if because of a nonbusiness activity you do not travel by a direct route, your business days are the days it would take you to travel a reasonably direct route to your business destination. H r block tax preparation Extra days for side trips or nonbusiness activities cannot be counted as business days. H r block tax preparation Presence required. H r block tax preparation   Count as a business day any day your presence is required at a particular place for a specific business purpose. H r block tax preparation Count it as a business day even if you spend most of the day on nonbusiness activities. H r block tax preparation Day spent on business. H r block tax preparation   If your principal activity during working hours is the pursuit of your trade or business, count the day as a business day. H r block tax preparation Also, count as a business day any day you are prevented from working because of circumstances beyond your control. H r block tax preparation Certain weekends and holidays. H r block tax preparation   Count weekends, holidays, and other necessary standby days as business days if they fall between business days. H r block tax preparation But if they follow your business meetings or activity and you remain at your business destination for nonbusiness or personal reasons, do not count them as business days. H r block tax preparation Example 1. H r block tax preparation Your tax home is New York City. H r block tax preparation You travel to Quebec, where you have a business appointment on Friday. H r block tax preparation You have another appointment on the following Monday. H r block tax preparation Because your presence was required on both Friday and Monday, they are business days. H r block tax preparation Because the weekend is between business days, Saturday and Sunday are counted as business days. H r block tax preparation This is true even though you use the weekend for sightseeing, visiting friends, or other nonbusiness activity. H r block tax preparation Example 2. H r block tax preparation If, in Example 1, you had no business in Quebec after Friday, but stayed until Monday before starting home, Saturday and Sunday would be nonbusiness days. H r block tax preparation Nonbusiness activity on the way to or from your business destination. H r block tax preparation   If you stopped for a vacation or other nonbusiness activity either on the way from the United States to your business destination, or on the way back to the United States from your business destination, you must allocate part of your travel expenses to the nonbusiness activity. H r block tax preparation   The part you must allocate is the amount it would have cost you to travel between the point where travel outside the United States begins and your nonbusiness destination and a return to the point where travel outside the United States ends. H r block tax preparation   You determine the nonbusiness portion of that expense by multiplying it by a fraction. H r block tax preparation The numerator (top number) of the fraction is the number of nonbusiness days during your travel outside the United States and the denominator (bottom number) is the total number of days you spend outside the United States. H r block tax preparation Example. H r block tax preparation You live in New York. H r block tax preparation On May 4 you flew to Paris to attend a business conference that began on May 5. H r block tax preparation The conference ended at noon on May 14. H r block tax preparation That evening you flew to Dublin where you visited with friends until the afternoon of May 21, when you flew directly home to New York. H r block tax preparation The primary purpose for the trip was to attend the conference. H r block tax preparation If you had not stopped in Dublin, you would have arrived home the evening of May 14. H r block tax preparation You do not meet any of the exceptions that would allow you to consider your travel entirely for business. H r block tax preparation May 4 through May 14 (11 days) are business days and May 15 through May 21 (7 days) are nonbusiness days. H r block tax preparation You can deduct the cost of your meals (subject to the 50% limit), lodging, and other business-related travel expenses while in Paris. H r block tax preparation You cannot deduct your expenses while in Dublin. H r block tax preparation You also cannot deduct 7/18 of what it would have cost you to travel round-trip between New York and Dublin. H r block tax preparation You paid $750 to fly from New York to Paris, $400 to fly from Paris to Dublin, and $700 to fly from Dublin back to New York. H r block tax preparation Round-trip airfare from New York to Dublin would have been $1,250. H r block tax preparation You figure the deductible part of your air travel expenses by subtracting 7/18 of the round-trip fare and other expenses you would have had in traveling directly between New York and Dublin ($1,250 × 7/18 = $486) from your total expenses in traveling from New York to Paris to Dublin and back to New York ($750 + $400 + $700 = $1,850). H r block tax preparation Your deductible air travel expense is $1,364 ($1,850 − $486). H r block tax preparation Nonbusiness activity at, near, or beyond business destination. H r block tax preparation   If you had a vacation or other nonbusiness activity at, near, or beyond your business destination, you must allocate part of your travel expenses to the nonbusiness activity. H r block tax preparation   The part you must allocate is the amount it would have cost you to travel between the point where travel outside the United States begins and your business destination and a return to the point where travel outside the United States ends. H r block tax preparation   You determine the nonbusiness portion of that expense by multiplying it by a fraction. H r block tax preparation The numerator (top number) of the fraction is the number of nonbusiness days during your travel outside the United States and the denominator (bottom number) is the total number of days you spend outside the United States. H r block tax preparation   None of your travel expenses for nonbusiness activities at, near, or beyond your business destination are deductible. H r block tax preparation Example. H r block tax preparation Assume that the dates are the same as in the previous example but that instead of going to Dublin for your vacation, you fly to Venice, Italy, for a vacation. H r block tax preparation You cannot deduct any part of the cost of your trip from Paris to Venice and return to Paris. H r block tax preparation In addition, you cannot deduct 7/18 of the airfare and other expenses from New York to Paris and back to New York. H r block tax preparation You can deduct 11/18 of the round-trip plane fare and other travel expenses from New York to Paris, plus your meals (subject to the 50% limit), lodging, and any other business expenses you had in Paris. H r block tax preparation (Assume these expenses total $4,939. H r block tax preparation ) If the round-trip plane fare and other travel-related expenses (such as food during the trip) are $1,750, you can deduct travel costs of $1,069 (11/18 × $1,750), plus the full $4,939 for the expenses you had in Paris. H r block tax preparation Other methods. H r block tax preparation   You can use another method of counting business days if you establish that it more clearly reflects the time spent on other than business activities outside the United States. H r block tax preparation Travel Primarily for Personal Reasons If you travel outside the United States primarily for vacation or for investment purposes, the entire cost of the trip is a nondeductible personal expense. H r block tax preparation However, if you spend some time attending brief professional seminars or a continuing education program, you can deduct your registration fees and other expenses you have that are directly related to your business. H r block tax preparation Example. H r block tax preparation The university from which you graduated has a continuing education program for members of its alumni association. H r block tax preparation This program consists of trips to various foreign countries where academic exercises and conferences are set up to acquaint individuals in most occupations with selected facilities in several regions of the world. H r block tax preparation However, none of the conferences are directed toward specific occupations or professions. H r block tax preparation It is up to each participant to seek out specialists and organizational settings appropriate to his or her occupational interests. H r block tax preparation Three-hour sessions are held each day over a 5-day period at each of the selected overseas facilities where participants can meet with individual practitioners. H r block tax preparation These sessions are composed of a variety of activities including workshops, mini-lectures, role playing, skill development, and exercises. H r block tax preparation Professional conference directors schedule and conduct the sessions. H r block tax preparation Participants can choose those sessions they wish to attend. H r block tax preparation You can participate in this program since you are a member of the alumni association. H r block tax preparation You and your family take one of the trips. H r block tax preparation You spend about 2 hours at each of the planned sessions. H r block tax preparation The rest of the time you go touring and sightseeing with your family. H r block tax preparation The trip lasts less than 1 week. H r block tax preparation Your travel expenses for the trip are not deductible since the trip was primarily a vacation. H r block tax preparation However, registration fees and any other incidental expenses you have for the five planned sessions you attended that are directly related and beneficial to your business are deductible business expenses. H r block tax preparation These expenses should be specifically stated in your records to ensure proper allocation of your deductible business expenses. H r block tax preparation Luxury Water Travel If you travel by ocean liner, cruise ship, or other form of luxury water transportation for business purposes, there is a daily limit on the amount you can deduct. H r block tax preparation The limit is twice the highest federal per diem rate allowable at the time of your travel. H r block tax preparation (Generally, the federal per diem is the amount paid to federal government employees for daily living expenses when they travel away from home, but in the United States, for business purposes. H r block tax preparation ) Daily limit on luxury water travel. H r block tax preparation   The highest federal per diem rate allowed and the daily limit for luxury water travel in 2013 is shown in the following table. H r block tax preparation   2013 Dates Highest Federal Per Diem Daily Limit on Luxury Water Travel   Jan. H r block tax preparation 1 – Mar. H r block tax preparation 31 $367 $734   Apr. H r block tax preparation 1 – June 30 312 624   July 1 – Aug. H r block tax preparation 31 310 620   Sept. H r block tax preparation 1 – Sept. H r block tax preparation 30 366 732   Oct. H r block tax preparation 1 – Dec. H r block tax preparation 31 374 748 Example. H r block tax preparation Caroline, a travel agent, traveled by ocean liner from New York to London, England, on business in May. H r block tax preparation Her expense for the 6-day cruise was $5,200. H r block tax preparation Caroline's deduction for the cruise cannot exceed $3,744 (6 days × $624 daily limit). H r block tax preparation Meals and entertainment. H r block tax preparation   If your expenses for luxury water travel include separately stated amounts for meals or entertainment, those amounts are subject to the 50% limit on meals and entertainment before you apply the daily limit. H r block tax preparation For a discussion of the 50% Limit , see chapter 2. H r block tax preparation Example. H r block tax preparation In the previous example, Caroline's luxury water travel had a total cost of $5,200. H r block tax preparation Of that amount, $3,700 was separately stated as meals and entertainment. H r block tax preparation Caroline, who is self-employed, is not reimbursed for any of her travel expenses. H r block tax preparation Caroline figures her deductible travel expenses as follows. H r block tax preparation Meals and entertainment $3,700   50% limit × . H r block tax preparation 50   Allowable meals &     entertainment $1,850   Other travel expenses + 1,800   Allowable cost before the daily limit $3,650 Daily limit for May 2013 $624   Times number of days × 6   Maximum luxury water travel     deduction $3,744 Amount of allowable deduction $3,650 Caroline's deduction for her cruise is limited to $3,650, even though the limit on luxury water travel is slightly higher. H r block tax preparation Not separately stated. H r block tax preparation   If your meal or entertainment charges are not separately stated or are not clearly identifiable, you do not have to allocate any portion of the total charge to meals or entertainment. H r block tax preparation Exceptions The daily limit on luxury water travel (discussed earlier) does not apply to expenses you have to attend a convention, seminar, or meeting on board a cruise ship. H r block tax preparation See Cruise Ships under Conventions. H r block tax preparation Conventions You can deduct your travel expenses when you attend a convention if you can show that your attendance benefits your trade or business. H r block tax preparation You cannot deduct the travel expenses for your family. H r block tax preparation If the convention is for investment, political, social, or other purposes unrelated to your trade or business, you cannot deduct the expenses. H r block tax preparation Your appointment or election as a delegate does not, in itself, determine whether you can deduct travel expenses. H r block tax preparation You can deduct your travel expenses only if your attendance is connected to your own trade or business. H r block tax preparation Convention agenda. H r block tax preparation   The convention agenda or program generally shows the purpose of the convention. H r block tax preparation You can show your attendance at the convention benefits your trade or business by comparing the agenda with the official duties and responsibilities of your position. H r block tax preparation The agenda does not have to deal specifically with your official duties and responsibilities; it will be enough if the agenda is so related to your position that it shows your attendance was for business purposes. H r block tax preparation Conventions Held Outside the North American Area You cannot deduct expenses for attending a convention, seminar, or similar meeting held outside the North American area unless: The meeting is directly related to your trade or business, and It is reasonable to hold the meeting outside the North American area. H r block tax preparation See Reasonableness test , later. H r block tax preparation If the meeting meets these requirements, you also must satisfy the rules for deducting expenses for business trips in general, discussed earlier under Travel Outside the United States . H r block tax preparation North American area. H r block tax preparation   The North American area includes the following locations. H r block tax preparation American Samoa Johnston Island Antigua and Barbuda Kingman Reef Aruba Marshall Islands Bahamas Mexico Baker Island Micronesia Barbados Midway Islands Bermuda Netherlands Antilles Canada Northern Mariana Costa Rica Islands Dominica Palau Dominican Republic Palmyra Atoll Grenada Panama Guam Puerto Rico Guyana Trinidad and Tobago Honduras USA Howland Island U. H r block tax preparation S. H r block tax preparation Virgin Islands Jamaica Wake Island Jarvis Island   The North American area also includes U. H r block tax preparation S. H r block tax preparation islands, cays, and reefs that are possessions of the United States and not part of the fifty states or the District of Columbia. H r block tax preparation Reasonableness test. H r block tax preparation   The following factors are taken into account to determine if it was reasonable to hold the meeting outside the North American area. H r block tax preparation The purpose of the meeting and the activities taking place at the meeting. H r block tax preparation The purposes and activities of the sponsoring organizations or groups. H r block tax preparation The homes of the active members of the sponsoring organizations and the places at which other meetings of the sponsoring organizations or groups have been or will be held. H r block tax preparation Other relevant factors you may present. H r block tax preparation Cruise Ships You can deduct up to $2,000 per year of your expenses of attending conventions, seminars, or similar meetings held on cruise ships. H r block tax preparation All ships that sail are considered cruise ships. H r block tax preparation You can deduct these expenses only if all of the following requirements are met. H r block tax preparation The convention, seminar, or meeting is directly related to your trade or business. H r block tax preparation The cruise ship is a vessel registered in the United States. H r block tax preparation All of the cruise ship's ports of call are in the United States or in possessions of the United States. H r block tax preparation You attach to your return a written statement signed by you that includes information about: The total days of the trip (not including the days of transportation to and from the cruise ship port), The number of hours each day that you devoted to scheduled business activities, and A program of the scheduled business activities of the meeting. H r block tax preparation You attach to your return a written statement signed by an officer of the organization or group sponsoring the meeting that includes: A schedule of the business activities of each day of the meeting, and The number of hours you attended the scheduled business activities. H r block tax preparation Prev  Up  Next   Home   More Online Publications
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Understanding your CP2057 Notice

You need to file an amended return. We've received information not reported on your tax return.


What you need to do

  • Read your notice carefully — it explains the information we received.
  • File an amended return if the information is correct.
  • If you believe the information is wrong, contact the business or person reporting the information and ask them to correct it.

You may want to...


Answers to Common Questions

What do I need to do?
You need to amend your return if the information we received is correct.

Do I have to amend my return when the information is wrong?
No. Don't file an amended return.

How do I amend my return?
Use the information in the notice to amend your return. Compare it against a copy of your original return. Report the difference or change on Form 1040-X, Amended U.S. Individual Income Tax Return. You can receive help at an IRS Taxpayer Assistance Center.

How can I find an IRS Taxpayer Assistance Center?
We have centers located throughout the country. Find the center nearest to you.

I don't have a copy of my original return to help me amend it. What can I do?
You can order a transcript of your return. You also can get one by completing and sending us a Form 4506-T, Request for Transcript of Tax Return.

I don't want a transcript of my return. I want a copy. How can I get one?
Did an accountant or some other person prepare your return? You could ask them for a copy.

I can't get a copy of my return from a tax preparer. How else can I get a copy of it?
You can get a copy of your return by completing and sending us a Form 4506, Request for Copy of Tax Return. We charge a fee for return requests.

What do I do if the information is wrong?
You don't have to amend your return when the information is wrong. Instead, contact whoever reported the wrong information and ask them to correct it. You don't need to contact us.

Should I contact you to correct wrong information?
You don't have to contact us to explain why the information is wrong. You don't have to reply to your notice.

I reported the information but I reported it incorrectly. Can I call you to correct my return?
We can accept your information over the phone for incorrectly reported information as long as the mistake did not increase or decrease your tax. You should file an amended return when the information was never reported or misreported in a way that had tax consequences.

The information is wrong because someone else is using my name and Social Security number. What can I do?
You can visit our Identity theft information to find out more about what you can do. You also should call us and let us know.

Why did it take you so long to contact me about this matter?
Our computer systems match the information you report on your tax return with information reported by employers, banks, businesses, and others. This matching takes several months to complete.


Tips for next year

You can avoid future problems by:

  • keeping accurate and full records
  • waiting until you get all of your income statements to file your tax return
  • checking the records you get from your employer, mortgage company, bank, or other sources of income (W-2s, 1098s, 1099s, etc.) to make sure they're correct
  • including all your income on your tax return
  • following the instructions on how to report income, expenses and deductions
  • filing an amended tax return for any information you receive after you've filed your return

Consider filing your taxes electronically. Filing online can help you avoid mistakes and find credits and deductions that you may qualify for. In many cases you can file for free. Learn more about how to file electronically.

Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 28-Feb-2014

How to get help

  • Call the 1-800 number listed on the top right corner of your notice.
  • Authorize someone (e.g., accountant) to contact the IRS on your behalf using Form 2848.
  • See if you qualify for help from a Low Income Taxpayer Clinic.
     

The H R Block Tax Preparation

H r block tax preparation Index A Alimony paid, Alimony paid. H r block tax preparation Alimony received, Alimony received. H r block tax preparation Annulment, Divorce or separation. H r block tax preparation Assistance (see Tax help) B Basis of property, death of spouse, Death of spouse. H r block tax preparation Business expenses, Business and investment expenses. H r block tax preparation C Child tax credit, Child tax credit. H r block tax preparation Civil service annuities, Civil service retirement. H r block tax preparation Community income defined, Community or Separate Property and Income Community income, special rules, Certain community income not treated as community income by one spouse. H r block tax preparation Community property defined, Community or Separate Property and Income Community property laws disregarded, Community Property Laws Disregarded Credits Child tax credit, Credits, Taxes, and Payments Earned income credit, Earned income credit. H r block tax preparation CSRS annuities, Civil service retirement. H r block tax preparation D Death of spouse, basis of property, Death of spouse. H r block tax preparation Deductions Alimony paid, Deductions Business expenses, Deductions Investment expenses, Deductions IRA deduction, Deductions Personal expenses, Deductions Dependents, Exemptions Dividends, Dividends, interest, and rents. H r block tax preparation Divorce, Divorce or separation. H r block tax preparation Domestic partners, Registered domestic partners. H r block tax preparation Domicile, Domicile E Earned income credit, Earned income credit. H r block tax preparation End of the marital community, End of the Community Equitable relief, Equitable relief. H r block tax preparation ESA withdrawals, Withdrawals from individual retirement arrangements (IRAs) and Coverdell Education Savings Accounts (ESAs). H r block tax preparation Estimated tax payments, Estimated tax payments. H r block tax preparation Exempt income, Tax-exempt income. H r block tax preparation Exemptions Dependent, Exemptions Personal, Exemptions Extensions, Extension of time to file. H r block tax preparation F FERS annuities, Civil service retirement. H r block tax preparation Form 8958, Community or Separate Property and Income, Identifying Income, Deductions, and Credits, Dividends, interest, and rents. H r block tax preparation , Separate Return Preparation Free tax services, Free help with your tax return. H r block tax preparation G Gains and losses, Gains and losses. H r block tax preparation H Help (see Tax help) I Income Alimony received, Income Civil service annuities, Income Dividends, Income Gains and losses, Income Interest, Income IRA distributions, Income Lump-sum distributions, Income Military retirement pay, Income Partnership income, Income Pensions, Income Rents, Income Separate income, Income from separate property. H r block tax preparation Tax-exempt income, Income Wages, earnings, and profits, Income Innocent spouse relief, Relief from liability arising from community property law. H r block tax preparation , Equitable relief. H r block tax preparation Interest, Dividends, interest, and rents. H r block tax preparation Investment expenses, Business and investment expenses. H r block tax preparation IRA deduction, IRA deduction. H r block tax preparation IRA distributions, Withdrawals from individual retirement arrangements (IRAs) and Coverdell Education Savings Accounts (ESAs). H r block tax preparation J Joint return vs. H r block tax preparation separate returns, Joint Return Versus Separate Returns L Lump-sum distributions, Lump-sum distributions. H r block tax preparation M Military retirement pay, Military retirement pay. H r block tax preparation N Nonresident alien spouse, Nonresident alien spouse. H r block tax preparation O Overpayments, Overpayments. H r block tax preparation P Partnership income, Partnership income. H r block tax preparation Partnerships, self-employment tax, Partnerships. H r block tax preparation Payments Estimated tax payments, Estimated tax payments. H r block tax preparation Federal income tax withheld, Federal income tax withheld. H r block tax preparation Pensions, Pensions. H r block tax preparation Personal expenses, Personal expenses. H r block tax preparation Publications (see Tax help) R Registered domestic partners, Registered domestic partners. H r block tax preparation Relief from liability arising from community property law, Relief from liability arising from community property law. H r block tax preparation Rents, Dividends, interest, and rents. H r block tax preparation S Self-employment tax Partnership, Self-employment tax. H r block tax preparation Sole proprietorship, Self-employment tax. H r block tax preparation Separate income defined, Separate income. H r block tax preparation Separate property defined, Community or Separate Property and Income Separate property income, Income from separate property. H r block tax preparation Separate returns Extensions, Extension of time to file. H r block tax preparation Separate returns vs. H r block tax preparation joint return, Joint Return Versus Separate Returns Separated spouses, Spouses living apart all year. H r block tax preparation Separation agreement, Divorce or separation. H r block tax preparation Sole proprietorship, self-employment tax, Sole proprietorship. H r block tax preparation Spousal agreements, Spousal agreements. H r block tax preparation Spouses living apart, Spouses living apart all year. H r block tax preparation T Tax help, How To Get Tax Help Tax-exempt income, Tax-exempt income. H r block tax preparation TTY/TDD information, How To Get Tax Help W Wages, earnings, and profits, Wages, earnings, and profits. H r block tax preparation Withholding tax, Federal income tax withheld. H r block tax preparation Prev  Up     Home   More Online Publications