Tax Deduction Fails

Here are the most outrageous, real life tax deductions clients tried to take on their tax returns, according to a survey by the Minnesota Society of Certified Public Accountants of its CPA members in public accounting.

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Expensive Clothing Expensive Clothing

We all like to look nice, especially for business purposes. But you’re expected to arrive to work fully clothed (looking nice is a bonus).

Baby Grand Piano Baby Grand Piano

A client, who was a humanities professor, thought he could deduct a piano. Unless the professor was providing lessons as part of a small business, this was not an acceptable deduction.

Gambling Losses Gambling Losses

Unfortunately for one client, gambling losses didn’t qualify as a charitable donation to casinos or the Minnesota State Lottery.

‘Business’ Boat ‘Business’ Boat

One client wanted to depreciate the cost of a large boat because it was used occasionally for client entertainment. You better set sail on that idea.

Cat Food and Litter Cat Food and Litter

Your cats may be used to keep mice out of the barn, but their bare necessities aren’t deductible. In general, pet expenses aren’t deductible.

A Wedding to Remember A Wedding to Remember

A client wanted to deduct part of his wedding costs because more than half the guests were business-related contacts.

Keeping Yourself Rejuvenated Keeping Yourself Rejuvenated

Botox, tanning, nails and the like do not qualify as acceptable deductions.

Commuting to Work Commuting to Work

You can get mileage reimbursement either through your work (if offered) or the government for mileage incurred while on the clock and for business purposes, but driving to and from work is not going to stick.