I’m Working Locums, What Tax Deductions Can I Take?

Whether you’ve just graduated residency and are starting out as a locums attending or you’re already an established attending who has decided that working locums on the side would add some variety and boost your savings, you may be asking yourself how this new income will impact your taxes.  While this may seem just like any other contractor or moonlighting gig, there are a few different considerations to keep in mind.  So what tax deductions can you take for your locums income?

  • Round-trip travel expenses– If your locums company does not provide travel, these can include the costs of airline tickets, baggage fees, taxis, or other modes of transportation that get you to the location where you will be working.
  • Travel expenses while on assignment – After you arrive in the city where you will be working, many of the expenses you incur will be deductible since you are on a limited assignment away from your tax home. These expenses include hotel expense, the cost of a rental car or Uber charges, dry cleaning expense, and meals.  Usually, the most advantageous way to deduct meals expense is to use the standard meal allowance for the city in which you are working.
  • Home Office deduction – If you use an area of your home exclusively as the administrative hub for your locums work, then you can deduct a portion of your home expenses via this deduction. This administrative work can include scheduling, recordkeeping, or charting.
  • Licensing, education, business supplies – These items are the same as other 1099 work, but don’t forget to deduct them too.

Remember, anything that is reimbursed by your locums company is not deductible unless these costs are included in your 1099 form.  In addition to these various deductions, you will also be responsible for state taxes in the different locations that you work.  If you would like to learn more about the tax rates in the states where you are working, check out this article from the Tax Foundation, which includes a handy map showing the state tax rates.

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