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Where's My Luggage?

The tax consequences of losing your luggage.

McBrayer v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo. 1999-360 (1999)

Ministers and lay church employees often travel on church-related business. What are the tax consequences associated with a loss of one's luggage while traveling on a business trip? The Tax Court addressed this question in a case.

A teacher claimed a Schedule C expense deduction in the amount of $530 for luggage that she claimed had been stolen while she was using a restroom at Reagan National Airport. The only evidence she produced in support of the deduction were receipts for two pieces of replacement luggage she purchased shortly after the loss. The IRS denied the deduction, and the Tax Court agreed. The court concluded that no loss deduction was available, for the following three reasons:

(1) The teacher failed to establish that her luggage had been stolen. The court noted that "to be entitled to a [loss] deduction a taxpayer ...

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  • February 1, 2000

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