Which Executive Job Search Expenses Can I Deduct on My Tax Return?

by Meg Guiseppi on March 9, 2017

Ugh! It’s time to think about filing your tax returns again.

You may be in luck. You may be able to deduct some of your job search expenses.

Take a look at what the IRS has to say about deductions in their most current (August 2015) web page on job search deductions.

First, note that in order to deduct any job search expenses, your search must be focused on your current line of work. If you’re transitioning to a new occupation, you can’t deduct expenses.

Résumé Costs. You can deduct the cost of preparing and mailing your résumé.

Travel Expenses. If you travel to look for a new job, you may be able to deduct the cost of the trip. The trip must be mainly to look for a new job, but you may still be able to deduct some costs if looking for a job is not the main purpose of the trip.

Placement Agency. You can deduct some of your job placement agency fees.

First Job. You can’t deduct job search expenses if this is your first job.

Substantial Job Break. You can’t deduct job search expenses if there was a long break between the end of your last job and the time you began looking for a new one.

Reimbursed Costs. Reimbursed expenses are not deductible.

Check the link above for additional information and links to relevant publications.

Just to be sure you’re getting the most up-to-date information, check the IRS.gov website, or Google “IRS job search expenses tax deduction”, or check with your tax preparer.

If you worked with a resume/career professional, remember to get some kind of receipt or invoice for your records.

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