Job search expenses are tax deductible

With just more than a month before the tax filing deadline, let's tackle a tax filing option. Your job search expenses, which can add up, might be tax deductible. But it's not for every job search process for every person. There are rules.

Let's say you're a truck driver. You can write off costs of a job search if you are looking for a job in the same field.  If you are making a complete career change like becoming an accountant then you can't.  This idea is so baked in that if you're a recent college graduate looking for a job, your expenses aren't deductible either because it's not a continuing career move.

And if you have been out of the market for what the IRS calls "a substantial break" between jobs then no deduction for you either.

OK, let's say you're still good to go and you can write off your job search. Well, here are a few of the things you can write off.

                     TAX DEDUCTIBLE

  • Resume' Fees
  • Mailing, Want Ads & Phone Charges
  • Travel Expenses
  • Employment Agency Fees

Now it's not a guessing game. You have to have proof of these expenses. You can itemize them on line 21 of Schedule A.

But here's another hiccup: When you add up those deductions and any other miscellaneous expenses, they have to be more than 2 percent of your adjusted gross income. For example, you make $60,000 a year.  The total would have to be more than $1,200.

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