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A taxing question


dimsumfan
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I know I should probably contact a tax consultant, but interested in others' perspectives.

If doing freelance (paid) work as a restaurant reviewer and filing a Schedule C, are full costs of meals deductible? Meals are generally 50%, but this is real expense, not entertainment.

Thanks!

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I know I should probably contact a tax consultant, but interested in others' perspectives.

If doing freelance (paid) work as a restaurant reviewer and filing a Schedule C, are full costs of meals deductible? Meals are generally 50%, but this is real expense, not entertainment.

Thanks!

yes, they are--they are a business expense here, as oppose to entertainment.

ETA: I am not a tax consultant, but I spoke with one when I started doing reviews and he said that I could deduct the entire cost.

Edited by Sabrosita (log)

Gnomey

The GastroGnome

(The adventures of a Gnome who does not sit idly on the front lawn of culinary cottages)

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That would be my guess/hope, but one IRS agent read from Pub 463 and said 50%. Hoping others can offer their perspectives!

I know I should probably contact a tax consultant, but interested in others' perspectives.

If doing freelance (paid) work as a restaurant reviewer and filing a Schedule C, are full costs of meals deductible? Meals are generally 50%, but this is real expense, not entertainment.

Thanks!

yes, they are--they are a business expense here, as oppose to entertainment.

ETA: I am not a tax consultant, but I spoke with one when I started doing reviews and he said that I could deduct the entire cost.

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I'm also not a tax advisor or representative of the IRS, but I do know that it is completely routine for restaurant reviewers, food writers and the publications that hire them to deduct the full cost of meals as business expenses. I have been audited and that particular deduction was not questioned. You never know whether your auditor will deny the deduction, and if he or she does then it's probably not worth the expense of a lawsuit to fight it, but certainly you can take the full deduction in good faith. It's your business. That's a business expense. You're not a lawyer taking clients out on expense account. Your profession actually requires these meal expenditures.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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