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Elizabeth L. Hamann
Elizabeth L. Hamann, Accounting/Cert Reg. Tax Pro
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 61
Experience:  Over 25 years exp. Personal and Small Bus. Accounting/Taxes. Spec. in Construction Trades
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How do I claim Per Diem on Federal Taxes

Resolved Question:

My Family lives in our home in Mobile, AL. I was laid off from my Job in Oct 2005. I took a job in Freeport, TX. as a contractor Starting oct 31, 2005. I travel home every two weeks (500 miles each way) I have to maintain two residents. The IRS allows $151 dollars a day for Per Diem, but my contractor employer will not deduct Per Diem on employees pay checks. Can I charge the Per Diem on my 2005 Tax forms and if so, what form do I use?

Optional Information:
Clute, Texas

Already Tried:
Turbo Tax





Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  Elizabeth L. Hamann replied 8 years ago.

Since you accepted permanent employment out of state your travel is not considered a temporary work assignment, unless the work is expected to last less than a year. This being the case, your tax home is considered the city or general area where your main place of business or work is located, in your instance Freeport, Tx. There is no regard as to where you maintain your family home.


Your family home is in Mobile, Alabama, but you work in Freeport, Tx., where you stay and eat in restaurants. You return to Alabama every other weekend. You may not deduct any of your travel, meals, or lodging in Texas, because it is consdidered your tax home. Your travel on alternate weekends to your family home in Alabama is not travel for your work or business, so these expenses are also not deductible.


The IRS rules regarding out of town travel are as follows: Travel expenses paid or incurred in connection with a temporary work assignment away from home are deductible. However, travel expenses paid in connection with an indefinite work assignment are not deductible. Any work assignment in excess of one year is considered indefinite.


You may deduct any travel expenses, including meals and lodging, that you incurred while looking for a new job in your present trade or business, though.


I hope this sufficiently answers your questions. Let me know if you still have questions.

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
This is a contract Temporary position with Kelly Services. This means that it could end any minute or continue on for who knows how long. Would your statement still be true?
Expert:  Elizabeth L. Hamann replied 8 years ago.

If you are contracted through Kelly services and placed on temporary assignments, and the assignments are expected to last less than a year, then you could claim your expenses. IRS rules regarding temporary employment: Travel expenses paid or incurred in connection with a temporary work assignments away from home are deductible.


You would use Form 2106 or Form 2106–EZ. Your allowable unreimbursed expenses are carried from Form 2106 or Form 2106–EZ to Form l040 Schedule A, and are subject to a limit based on 2% of adjusted gross income.

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
My original post asked "what form I used to claim this." It is a temporary assignment as I will be going to Baton Rouge in May.
Expert:  Elizabeth L. Hamann replied 8 years ago.

The reply window did not open up for me initially so I edited the above reply and included this information, but will repost again.


You would use Form 2106 or Form 2106–EZ. Your allowable unreimbursed expenses are carried from Form 2106 or Form 2106–EZ to Form l040 Schedule A, and are subject to a limit based on 2% of adjusted gross income.


Let me know if you have further questions.

Elizabeth L. Hamann, Accounting/Cert Reg. Tax Pro
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 61
Experience: Over 25 years exp. Personal and Small Bus. Accounting/Taxes. Spec. in Construction Trades
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