Tax Tip Tuesday: Driving for Charity Can Be Deductible

Posted By ,Posted in Mileage.

Tax Tip Tuesday: Driving for Charity Can Be Deductible

Most people know that you can deduct the cost of driving when you are on business (not including commuting from home to work). But most people don’t know that it is also possible to deduct driving expenses when you do good deeds—that is, when you volunteer for a charity. For example, you can deduct your driving expenses if you drive each week to a local hospital to volunteer. You can deduct either (1) your actual expenses (primarily gas and oil) or (2) use the standard charitable mileage rate of 14 cents per mile.

Because the standard charitable mileage rate is so low—it hasn’t been adjusted in many years– it’s often better to use the actual expense method. You can also deduct parking fees and tolls, whichever method you use. As with any charitable deduction, however, this deduction may be taken only by taxpayers who itemize their personal deductions on IRS Schedule A, instead of taking the standard deduction. Only about one/third of all taxpayers itemize.

Stephen Fishman

Stephen Fishman

Stephen Fishman is a self-employed tax expert and regular contributor to MileIQ. He has dedicated his career as an attorney and author to writing useful, authoritative and recognized guides on taxes and business law for entrepreneurs, independent contractors, freelancers and other self-employed people. He is the author of over 20 books and hundreds of articles, and has been quoted in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Chicago Tribune, and many other publications. Visit Fishman Law and Tax Files for more information on his work.
Stephen Fishman

Latest posts by Stephen Fishman (see all)

MileIQ’s blog does not constitute professional tax advice. You should contact your own tax professional to discuss your situation.

x



 
Please enter a valid phone number.
x
Start logging your miles automatically using MileIQ.
Start logging your miles automatically using MileIQ.
<style type="text/css">
#exit-signup {
  z-index: 9999;
}



@media (max-width:796px){
 #exit-signup .quote-text {
    display:none;
}


}

@media (max-width:678px){
#exit-signup ul.mileiq-feats.lower {
display:none;
}
}

#exit-signup .quote-text {
    z-index: 9999999;
    font-size: 18px;
}

#ulp-s3QqZ4gQ5NIl41ua{
 min-height:500px!important;
}

#exit-signup .modal-dialog {
  width: 100%;
  max-width: 900px;
}

#exit-signup ul.mileiq-feats li {
  display: inline-block;
  width: 218px;
  background: url("/images/popups/download-modal/green-check.png") no-repeat;
  padding-left: 28px;
  text-align: left;
  font-size: 14px;
  font-weight: 600;
  color:#808080;
}

#exit-signup .quote-author {
  font-weight: 600;
  color: #fff;
  font-size: 14px;
text-align: right;
}

#exit-signup .quote-text {
  color: #FFF;
  position: absolute;
  bottom: 8px;
  left: -5px;
  padding: 11px;
  text-align: right;
}

#exit-signup ul.mileiq-feats.lower {
  max-width: 300px;
  margin-left: auto;
  margin-right: auto;
  margin-bottom: 30px;
}

#exit-signup ul.mileiq-feats.lower li .inner {
  width: 300px;
}

#exit-signup ul.mileiq-feats.lower li  {
  width: 300px;
}


@media(min-width: 884px){
  
  #exit-signup .quote-text {
    right: 56px;
    bottom: 17px;
  }

#exit-signup .col-md-8 {
padding-right:40px;
}

#exit-signup .col-md-4 {
padding-left:60px!important;
}
}

ul.mileiq-feats {
font-family: 'RealTextOT';
}

@media(min-width: 664px) and (max-width: 991px){
  #exit-signup .quote-text {
    left: 14%!important;
    bottom: 17px;
  }
}

@media(max-width: 663px){
  #exit-signup .quote-text {
    text-align: center;
  }
}

@media(min-width: 992px){
  #exit-signup .col-md-4 {
    background: url("/images/popups/download-modal/or-divider.png") no-repeat;
    background-size: 24px 223px;
    height: 223px;
    padding-left: 45px;
  }


  #exit-signup ul.mileiq-feats.lower{
   display: none; 
  }
}

@media(max-width: 991px){
  #exit-signup .divider-line {
    margin-bottom: 10px!important;
  }
  #exit-signup .modal-body {
    padding: 28px 40px 36px!important;
  }
  #exit-signup ul.mileiq-feats.upper{
   display: none; 
  }
  #exit-signup .col-md-8 {
    display: none;
  }
  #exit-signup .modal-banner {
    padding-left: 20px;
    padding-right: 20px;
    padding-bottom: 19px;
    text-align: center;
  }



  .dl-badges {
    max-width: 180px;
    margin-left: auto;
    margin-right: auto;
   }
   
}

#exit-signup .section-title {
       text-align:center;
   }

ul.mileiq-feats.upper{
max-width: 670px;
margin-left: auto;
margin-right:50px
}

#exit-signup ul.mileiq-feats li .inner{
  width:148px;
}

#exit-signup img.modal-color-bar-top{
  position: absolute;
  width: 100%;
  max-height: 62px;
}

#exit-signup .section-title {
  font-size: 16px;
  font-weight: 600;
  color: #4D4D4D;
  margin-bottom: 15px;
}

#exit-signup #modal-signup-wrap {
  margin-bottom: 36px;
  max-width: 491px;
}

img.mob-banner {
    position: absolute;
    bottom: 0;
    left: 0
}

#exit-signup img.modal-color-bar-bottom{
  position: absolute;
  bottom: 0;
  height: 7px;
  width: 100%;
}

#exit-signup .divider-line {
  height: 1px;
  background: #ddd;
  margin-bottom: 30px;
  margin-top: 19px;
}

#exit-signup .modal-content {
  border-radius: 3px;
  overflow: hidden;
  background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);
}
#exit-signup .modal-body {    
  padding: 32px 40px 53px;
}
#exit-signup .modal-header {
  padding: 10px;
    border-bottom: none;
}
#exit-signup h2 {
  font-family: "RealTextOT-Bold";
  font-size: 41px;
  margin-bottom: 25px;
  color: #333;
  margin-left: auto;
  margin-right: auto;
  line-height: 1.017;
text-align: center;
}

@media(max-width: 768px){
  #exit-signup h2 {
    font-size: 32px!important;
  }

#exit-signup .section-title{
display:none;
}
}

#exit-signup .badges .left-button{
  float:left;
  width: 48%;
}

#exit-signup .badges .right-button{
  float:right;
  width: 48%;
}

#exit-signup .badges{
  max-width: 320px;
  margin-left: auto;
  margin-right: auto;
  margin-bottom: 15px;
}

#exit-signup .modal-white-x{
  position: absolute;
  right: 20px;
  top: 20px;
}

#exit-signup button.close{
  position: absolute;
  right: 17px;
  top: 14px;
  opacity: 1;
  z-index: 100;
}

#exit-signup button.close:focus{
  outline:none;
}
</style>

<div id="exit-signup">
<div class="modal-body text-center">
            <h2>Try MileIQ for Free.</h2>
            <ul class="mileiq-feats upper">
              <li><div class="inner">Your data is never sold or shared</div></li>
              <li><div class="inner">All versions of our apps are ad-free</div></li>
              <li><div class="inner">Your drive history is secure & available</div></li>
            </ul>
            <div class="divider-line"></div>
            <div class="col-md-8">
              <div class="section-title">
                Get started by creating an account
              </div>
              <div id="modal-signup-wrap-exit">
                <iframe src="https://dashboard.mileiq.com/signup?v=iframe-2&media_source=blog&campaign=https://www.mileiq.com/blog/blog&campaign_detail=blog_exit_popup" style="border: none;height: 181px;width:100%;"></iframe>
              </div>
            </div>
            <div class="col-md-4">
              <div class="section-title">
                Download the app
              </div>
              <div class="dl-badges">
              <!-- Badges -->
                <ul class="badge-list">
                  <li style="margin-bottom: 10px;">
                    <a href="http://app.appsflyer.com/id578830929?pid=website&c=header_modal" target="_blank">
                      <img src="/images/popups/download-modal/ios-badge.png">
                    </a>
                  </li>
                  <li>
                    <a href="http://app.appsflyer.com/com.mobiledatalabs.mileiq?pid=website&c=header_modal" target="_blank">
                      <img src="/images/popups/download-modal/android-badge.png">
                    </a>
                  </li>
                </ul>
                <div style="clear:both"></div>
              </div>
            </div>
          </div>
          <ul class="mileiq-feats lower">
            <li><div class="inner">Your data is never sold or shared</div></li>
            <li><div class="inner">All versions of our apps are ad-free</div></li>
            <li><div class="inner">Your drive history is secure & available</div></li>
          </ul>
          <div class="modal-banner">
            
            <div class="quote-text">
              “When I show MileIQ to my accounting clients, they sign up immediately. Fact.”
              <div class="quote-author">
                -Jody Jordan, CPA & MileIQ user
              </div>
            </div>
            
          </div>
         </div>
          <img src="/images/popups/download-modal/lower-banner.png" class="mob-banner">
</div>