Say you’ve had to work from home during the COVID-19 crisis. Join the club. Like many others who are lucky enough to be able to do their jobs from home, you might now be wondering if you can claim a federal income tax deduction for home office expenses. As things currently stand, the answer is no unless you’re self-employed.
But the answer could change if Congress grants additional COVID-19-related tax relief. Here’s what you need to know about home office write-offs as things stand right now.
No home office deductions for employees
Before the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), an employee could potentially claim itemized deductions for unreimbursed employee business expenses —including home office expenses —if you used a home office for the convenience of your employer. In that case, you could lump the home office expenses together with other miscellaneous expenses — such as fees for investment advice, tax advice, tax preparation, and union dues.
If your total miscellaneous expenses exceeded 2% of your adjusted gross income (AGI), you could write off the excess — as long as you itemized deductions.
Unfortunately, that was then and this is now.Continue reading “I’ve been working at home during the pandemic — do I qualify for home office tax deductions?”