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Question
Can I deduct car mileage, phone bill, gas receipts, new tires, car maintenance, car insurance and tolls on my SE form?
Answer

Yes and yes, but it’s an either-or situation.You have two options when writing off your car: business mileage or actual costs. You have to pick one or the other.

  1. The business mileage deduction is a flat rate of $0.56 per mile for 2021. The IRS releases a new standard mileage rate every year that is intended to cover the cost of depreciation, fuel, repairs, insurance, etc.
  2. The actual costs method lets you write-off your what you actually paid for fuel, maintenance, insurance, etc, as well as depreciate your vehicle over its useful life.

For more in-depth instructions on how to write-off your auto expenses, check out our Guide to Car Deductions.

Note: tolls and parking fees are fully deductible under both methods.

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Sarah York, EA

Sarah is a staff writer at Keeper Tax and has her Enrolled Agent license with the IRS. Her work has been featured in Business Insider, Money Under 30, Best Life, GOBankingRates, and Shopify. She has nearly a decade of public accounting experience, and has worked with clients in a wide range of industries, including oil and gas, manufacturing, real estate, wholesale and retail, finance, and ecommerce. Sarah has extensive experience offering strategic tax planning at the state and federal level. During her time in industry, she handled tax returns for C Corps, S corps, partnerships, nonprofits, and sole proprietorships. Sarah is a member of the National Association of Enrolled Agents (NAEA) and maintains her continuing education requirements by completing over 30 hours of tax training every year. In her spare time, she is a devoted cat mom and enjoys hiking, baking, and overwatering her houseplants.

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