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How To Fill Out An Amended Tax Return Form

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How To Fill Out An Amended Tax Return Form

How to fill out an amended tax return form Publication 526 - Additional Material Prev  Up  Next   Home   More Online Publications
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Deducting Business Expenses

Business expenses are the cost of carrying on a trade or business. These expenses are usually deductible if the business is operated to make a profit.

What Can I Deduct?

To be deductible, a business expense must be both ordinary and necessary. An ordinary expense is one that is common and accepted in your trade or business. A necessary expense is one that is helpful and appropriate for your trade or business. An expense does not have to be indispensable to be considered necessary.

It is important to separate business expenses from the following expenses:

  • The expenses used to figure the cost of goods sold,
  • Capital Expenses, and
  • Personal Expenses.

Cost of Goods Sold

If your business manufactures products or purchases them for resale, you generally must value inventory at the beginning and end of each tax year to determine your cost of goods sold. Some of your expenses may be included in figuring the cost of goods sold. Cost of goods sold is deducted from your gross receipts to figure your gross profit for the year. If you include an expense in the cost of goods sold, you cannot deduct it again as a business expense.

The following are types of expenses that go into figuring the cost of goods sold.

  • The cost of products or raw materials, including freight
  • Storage
  • Direct labor costs (including contributions to pensions or annuity plans) for workers who produce the products
  • Factory overhead

Under the uniform capitalization rules, you must capitalize the direct costs and part of the indirect costs for certain production or resale activities. Indirect costs include rent, interest, taxes, storage, purchasing, processing, repackaging, handling, and administrative costs.

This rule does not apply to personal property you acquire for resale if your average annual gross receipts (or those of your predecessor) for the preceding 3 tax years are not more than $10 million.

For additional information, refer to the chapter on Cost of Goods Sold, Publication 334, Tax Guide for Small Businesses and the chapter on Inventories, Publication 538, Accounting Periods and Methods.

Capital Expenses

You must capitalize, rather than deduct, some costs. These costs are a part of your investment in your business and are called capital expenses. Capital expenses are considered assets in your business. There are, in general, three types of costs you capitalize.

  • Business start-up cost (See the note below)
  • Business assets
  • Improvements

Note: You can elect to deduct or amortize certain business start-up costs. Refer to chapters 7 and 8 of Publication 535, Business Expenses.

Personal versus Business Expenses

Generally, you cannot deduct personal, living, or family expenses. However, if you have an expense for something that is used partly for business and partly for personal purposes, divide the total cost between the business and personal parts. You can deduct the business part.

For example, if you borrow money and use 70% of it for business and the other 30% for a family vacation, you can deduct 70% of the interest as a business expense. The remaining 30% is personal interest and is not deductible. Refer to chapter 4 of Publication 535, Business Expenses, for information on deducting interest and the allocation rules.

Business Use of Your Home

If you use part of your home for business, you may be able to deduct expenses for the business use of your home. These expenses may include mortgage interest, insurance, utilities, repairs, and depreciation. Refer to Home Office Deduction and Publication 587, Business Use of Your Home, for more information.

Business Use of Your Car

If you use your car in your business, you can deduct car expenses. If you use your car for both business and personal purposes, you must divide your expenses based on actual mileage. Refer to Publication 463, Travel, Entertainment, Gift, and Car Expenses. For a list of current and prior year mileage rates see the Standard Mileage Rates.

Other Types of Business Expenses

  • Employees' Pay - You can generally deduct the pay you give your employees for the services they perform for your business.
  • Retirement Plans - Retirement plans are savings plans that offer you tax advantages to set aside money for your own, and your employees' retirement.
  • Rent Expense - Rent is any amount you pay for the use of property you do not own. In general, you can deduct rent as an expense only if the rent is for property you use in your trade or business. If you have or will receive equity in or title to the property, the rent is not deductible.
  • Interest - Business interest expense is an amount charged for the use of money you borrowed for business activities.
  • Taxes - You can deduct various federal, state, local, and foreign taxes directly attributable to your trade or business as business expenses.
  • Insurance - Generally, you can deduct the ordinary and necessary cost of insurance as a business expense, if it is for your trade, business, or profession.

This list is not all inclusive of the types of business expenses that you can deduct. For additional information, refer to Publication 535, Business Expenses.

Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 04-Feb-2014

The How To Fill Out An Amended Tax Return Form

How to fill out an amended tax return form Part One -   The Income Tax Return The four chapters in this part provide basic information on the tax system. How to fill out an amended tax return form They take you through the first steps of filling out a tax return—such as deciding what your filing status is, how many exemptions you can take, and what form to file. How to fill out an amended tax return form They also discuss recordkeeping requirements, IRS e-file (electronic filing), certain penalties, and the two methods used to pay tax during the year: withholding and estimated tax. How to fill out an amended tax return form Table of Contents 1. How to fill out an amended tax return form   Filing InformationWhat's New Reminders Introduction Do I Have To File a Return?Individuals—In General Dependents Certain Children Under Age 19 or Full-Time Students Self-Employed Persons Aliens Who Should File Which Form Should I Use?Form 1040EZ Form 1040A Form 1040 Does My Return Have To Be on Paper?IRS e-file When Do I Have To File?Private delivery services. How to fill out an amended tax return form Extensions of Time To File How Do I Prepare My Return?When Do I Report My Income and Expenses? Social Security Number (SSN) Presidential Election Campaign Fund Computations Attachments Third Party Designee Signatures Paid Preparer Refunds Amount You Owe Gift To Reduce Debt Held by the Public Name and Address Where Do I File? What Happens After I File?What Records Should I Keep? Why Keep Records? Kinds of Records to Keep Basic Records How Long to Keep Records Refund Information Interest on Refunds Change of Address What If I Made a Mistake?Amended Returns and Claims for Refund Penalties Identity Theft 2. How to fill out an amended tax return form   Filing StatusWhat's New Introduction Useful Items - You may want to see: Marital StatusDivorced persons. How to fill out an amended tax return form Divorce and remarriage. How to fill out an amended tax return form Annulled marriages. How to fill out an amended tax return form Head of household or qualifying widow(er) with dependent child. How to fill out an amended tax return form Considered married. How to fill out an amended tax return form Same-sex marriage. How to fill out an amended tax return form Spouse died during the year. How to fill out an amended tax return form Married persons living apart. How to fill out an amended tax return form Single Married Filing JointlyFiling a Joint Return Married Filing SeparatelySpecial Rules Head of HouseholdConsidered Unmarried Keeping Up a Home Qualifying Person Qualifying Widow(er) With Dependent Child 3. How to fill out an amended tax return form   Personal Exemptions and DependentsWhat's New Introduction Useful Items - You may want to see: ExemptionsPersonal Exemptions Exemptions for Dependents Qualifying Child Qualifying Relative Phaseout of Exemptions Social Security Numbers for DependentsBorn and died in 2013. How to fill out an amended tax return form Taxpayer identification numbers for aliens. How to fill out an amended tax return form Taxpayer identification numbers for adoptees. How to fill out an amended tax return form 4. How to fill out an amended tax return form   Tax Withholding and Estimated TaxWhat's New for 2014 Reminders Introduction Useful Items - You may want to see: Tax Withholding for 2014Salaries and Wages Tips Taxable Fringe Benefits Sick Pay Pensions and Annuities Gambling Winnings Unemployment Compensation Federal Payments Backup Withholding Estimated Tax for 2014Who Does Not Have To Pay Estimated Tax Who Must Pay Estimated Tax How To Figure Estimated Tax When To Pay Estimated Tax How To Figure Each Payment How To Pay Estimated Tax Credit for Withholding and Estimated Tax for 2013Withholding Estimated Tax Underpayment Penalty for 2013 Prev  Up  Next   Home   More Online Publications