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michasiegel91
Level 3

Pre-tax vs. Post tax commuter benefits

I currently pay my commuter benefits through an employer registered program pretax for mass transit. However, the customer service there is terrible. Is it possible instead to pay for it out of pocket and deduct the expenses at the end of the year, or is this benefit only allowed pretax though an employer?

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Accepted Solutions
tagteam
Level 15

Pre-tax vs. Post tax commuter benefits


@michasiegel91 wrote:

...is this benefit only allowed pretax though an employer?


Yes, that is correct. Unreimbursed job expenses are no longer deductible as miscellaneous itemized deductions as a result of tax reform.

 

See https://www.irs.gov/instructions/i1040sca#idm140545383599376

 

Regardless, commuting expenses would not be deductible in any event.

View solution in original post

2 Replies
tagteam
Level 15

Pre-tax vs. Post tax commuter benefits


@michasiegel91 wrote:

...is this benefit only allowed pretax though an employer?


Yes, that is correct. Unreimbursed job expenses are no longer deductible as miscellaneous itemized deductions as a result of tax reform.

 

See https://www.irs.gov/instructions/i1040sca#idm140545383599376

 

Regardless, commuting expenses would not be deductible in any event.

View solution in original post

Carl
Level 15

Pre-tax vs. Post tax commuter benefits

W-2 work related expenses of any type are no longer deductible. Period.

The only thing one can do as a "work around" to this is where the employer implements what is called an "accountable reimbursement plan". This is where you provide the employer all original receipts for your work related expenses and the employer reimburses you after the fact, for those expenses you prove with a receipt. With this plan the amount reimbursed is not included on your W-2 at the end of the year. So in fact, you don't pay taxes on what the employer reimburses you, and it's not reported as income to you either.

 

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