The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued the 2019 optional standard mileage rates used to calculate the deductible costs of operating an automobile (including vans, pickups and panel trucks) for business, charitable, medical or moving purposes.
Beginning on January 1, 2019, the standard mileage rates are:
- 58 cents per mile driven for business use, up 3.5 cents from the rate for 2018,
- 20 cents per mile driven for medical or moving purposes, up 2 cents from the rate for 2018, and
- 14 cents per mile driven in service of charitable organizations (unchanged from last year).
It is important to note that under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, taxpayers cannot claim a miscellaneous itemized deduction for unreimbursed employee travel expenses. Taxpayers also cannot claim a deduction for moving expenses, except members of the Armed Forces on active duty moving under orders to a permanent change of station.
Taxpayers always have the option of calculating the actual costs of using their vehicle rather than using the standard mileage rates.
A taxpayer may not use the business standard mileage rate for a vehicle after using any depreciation method under the Modified Accelerated Cost Recovery System (MACRS) or after claiming a Section 179 deduction for that vehicle. In addition, the business standard mileage rate cannot be used for more than four vehicles used simultaneously.
Employers should be aware that the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act suspended the employees ability to itemize unreimbursed employee expenses including unreimbursed travel and mileage for tax years 2018 - 2025.