Full Time Firefighter - Meals and Cell Phone deduction??
(Chicago, IL, USA)
First, thanks for helping all of us who would be lost otherwise. Onto the question...I'm a full-time firefighter at a municipal dept. My schedule is 24 hours on/48 hours off. There are a few guys at the station that go to a "great tax guy" who basically deducts money each time one of the guys says the word "firefighter". The big things that they seem to deduct are:
-Clothing upkeep ($x / load - which is once a duty day - approx 110 days per yr -assuming 10 days of reduction / vacation)
-Cell phone (we do receive emergency pages via text message, and calls for overtime, so we do need a phone for work...however, we all use the phone for other purposes)
-Meal deductions (we pay $10 each day into a meal fund, then shop at the local grocery store...then prepare lunch and dinner at the station. This is NOT mandatory and we can choose to bring in our own meals...only one or two people at the department bring their own)
Anyway - at least one person deducts...
**Clothing: $5 x 110 =$550 (even though he washes his clothes at the station and has no receipt of using a laundromat
**Cell phone: $100 x 12 = $1200 (even though he uses his phone for personal use as well)
**Meals: $10 x 110 = $1100
Is ANY of this legit? I do see "meals" on your worksheet, but in researching, it looked like those can only be deducted if they are a mandatory condition of employment. Any guidance you could provide would be greatly appreciated!!!!!