Tax Deduction Tips For Job Seekers

It’s that time of year again! Although working on deadline is nothing new to media folks, as tax day swiftly approaches on April 17th, freelancers and full-timers alike may be scurrying to submit tax returns. Based on the results of a recent survey, countless people overlook numerous applicable deductions.

According to a new survey by CareerBuilder and Liberty Tax Service, job seekers may inadvertently forget to include important tax deductions related to their job and job search.

Only 20 percent of respondents have claimed work-related expenses on their returns and only seven percent included job search expenses. The numbers may be low because it’s not always clear as to what’s eligible and what’s not.

While it’s always best to talk to a tax advisor based on personal situations, the survey revealed only 25 percent of respondents were aware they may claim professional writing services as a deduction. And fancy resume paper, too!

Less than half of respondents knew that travel to and from job interviews may be claimed. John Hewitt, CEO of Liberty Tax Services, explained in their press release:

“Documenting the costs of a job search may deliver a tax break whether it results in a new position or not. Job-search expenses may be deductible when, totaled with employee expenses and other miscellaneous deductions, they exceed 2 percent of adjusted gross income.”

In addition to pounding the pavement expenses, people often overlook continuing education. It may be considered a tax deduction and yet 55 percent of respondents were not aware that going back to school to hone their skills or develop new ones may be applicable.

Another item highlighted in the study? Home office expenses. This category may particularly resonate with freelancers and for good reason.

In the press release Hewitt added, “Home office expenses may be claimed if you exclusively and regularly use your home office as your principal place of business and/or meet other requirements. It’s important to be aware of the criteria for any eligible work-related expense, so you can appropriately maximize your return.”