In Uncategorized on 06/25/2019 at 00:02

Neither movie nor magazine, this is the story of Donald Burden and Mary Torres, 2019 T. C. Sum. Op. 11, filed 6/24/19. Don and Mary are traveling people, Don as a Seventh Day Adventist pastor, and Mary as aircrew for United Airlines, on which by coincidence I flew home this afternoon.

Mary maintains a “crash pad” in northern NJ when she has to work from there. But her problem is her home is with Pastor Don in OH; thus her “crash pad” is her personal choice, and her deduction for rent thereon crashes.

Pastor Don’s problems are his car mileage logs. Judge James B (“Big Jim”) Halpern finds these unworthy of belief.

“Fourth, respondent claims that the logs contain patently wrong or dubious entries. For instance, respondent points out, the logs purport that Pastor Burden drove for business purposes 360 days out of 365 days during [year at issue], and, on average, he drove more than 100 business miles a day in and around Columbus, Ohio. The travel log also appears to indicate that Pastor Burden drove to and from the Dominican Republic, once in January …, leaving on a Sunday and returning the next Wednesday, and again in September …, leaving on a Sunday and returning eight days later. And the log also indicates he drove to and from South Africa in December …. Also, while the logs claim business trips to Alabama, Florida, and Texas, petitioners failed to produce gas receipts or other records that would substantiate that the travel actually occurred. They also offered nothing other than Pastor Burden’s testimony to prove the business purpose of any of the trips.” 2019 T. C. Sum. Op. 11, at pp. 11-12.

And Pastor Burden’s overseas travels featured too much sightseeing to serve as “strictly business.”

“Petitioners have failed to show that Pastor Burden’s travel … either to the Dominican Republic or to South Africa primarily related to his trade or business. We conclude that his traveling expenses were personal expenses and not deductible for Federal income tax purposes. See sec. 262(a); sec. 1.162-2(b)(1), Income Tax Regs.” 2019 T. C. Sum. Op. 11, at pp. 15-16.

Your Section 162s had better be “strictly business.” Even if you have fun.




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