By April 10, 2015 1 Comments

Ask a Travel Nurse: Should my housing stipend be taxed?

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Ask a Travel Nurse: Should my housing stipend be taxed?

Ask a Travel Nurse Question:

I am currently on contract in California for three more months and chose to take my own housing. My permanent residence in Illinois is listed with my company, where I have numerous things registered to that address (car, voter’s registration, etc.) and also have many belongings there including two cats. Since my mom usually handles my finances (I can save lives but am terrible with tax numbers) I do not pay rent. My mom and her tax consultant believe that my housing should be taxed and think I’m technically a transient. My understanding from the company is that I am not and I should get my California housing stipend tax free. In your opinion, should my housing stipend be taxed? Thanks so much!

My mom and her tax consultant believe that my housing should be taxed and think I’m technically a transient. My understanding from the company is that I am not and I should get my California housing stipend tax free. In your opinion, should my housing stipend be taxed? Thanks so much!

Ask a Travel Nurse Answer:

This question would be much better suited for the people over at TravelTax.com.

Joseph Smith, who was once a traveling healthcare professional, is an enrolled agent with the IRS and while I can answer many questions regarding taxes and the traveling healthcare professional, when it comes to specific cases, the people at TravelTax.com would be best to advise you.

You can always email then a question through their site, but understandably, you may currently have a bit of a delay in their response due to it being “tax time.”

Just from what you have stated, although many others in your situation would certainly claim they were eligible to take the stipend tax free, I believe your mom and tax consultant may be correct in their assessment of your situation.

The tax exempt status comes from the assumption that you are duplicating living expenses due to working away from the area in which you normally do business. Without paying rent, in the eyes of the IRS, it could be argued that you are not really duplicating your living expenses while out on the road.

But again, run it by the people over at TravelTax.com and see what they think.

David

david@travelnursesbible.com

 

First time bonus!

About the Author:

Hello everyone. I’m a travel nurse originally from Ohio who graduated in 1993 from Mount Carmel School of Nursing in Columbus. I completed a critical care fellowship at Riverside Methodist Hospital in 1994 and started traveling in that specialty a year later. My first travel assignment was in Maui and since that time I have completed close to 40 different contracts in various states with multiple travel companies. I am the author of Travel Nurse’s Bible (A Guide to Everything on Travel Nursing), in addition to my writings here and in the pages of Travel Nursing publications such as Healthcare Traveler Magazine and American Nurse Today. I am presently on assignment in Phoenix, AZ and travel anywhere from six to eleven months of the year.

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