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Tax Court Case Regarding Clergy Income Taxes

The Tax Court ruled that miles driven by a minister from his home to a pastoral call are commuting miles that cannot be deducted or reimbursed as a business expense.

Federal
State:
Key point. Expenses incurred in commuting to and from work are a nondeductible personal expense. This includes expenses incurred by ministers between their home and a pastoral assignment.

The Tax Court ruled that miles driven by a minister from his home to a pastoral call are commuting miles that cannot be deducted or reimbursed as a business expense. A taxpayer performed services as a minister for approximately 6 months each year, during the winter and spring. He was not affiliated with a particular church. His ministerial activity consisted of serving as a chaplain to a mobile home community located approximately 35 miles from his home in Florida. That community consisted of people the minister referred to as "snowbirds," which he defined as people from the northern United States who came to Florida each year for the winter and spring months. The minister conducted services ...

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Posted:
  • November 1, 1999

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