Magazine & Books Deductions


B

Bounce Message

For example, if I buy a hammer or saw, I know these fall under office supplies
or tools & equipments (I created this one). However, if I buy a material like
magazine subscription, books, etc., where would I put it as a deductible
expense?

I will take the answer here in the newsgoup, not by email.
 
Ad

Advertisements

A

aps

Bounce Message said:
For example, if I buy a hammer or saw, I know these fall under office supplies
or tools & equipments (I created this one). However, if I buy a material like
magazine subscription, books, etc., where would I put it as a deductible
expense?

I will take the answer here in the newsgoup, not by email.
Well first of all, not ALL magazine and book subscriptions are deductible as business
expenses. Trade magazines, manuals and catalogs and the like dedicated to one's
line of business would be examples of deductible subscriptions and
purchases would be classified as subcription or trade publications expenses. However,
subcriptions to your local paper or Newsweek, People mag or the like would not be
deductible so the first thing one has to do is distinguish between what is a deductible
business expense as opposed to a personal expense which is not deductible, even it
they are for use by your customers to pass time until their appointment (as in a doctor's
office). David Bemiss, CMA, EA
 
H

Haskel LaPort

Well first of all, not ALL magazine and book subscriptions are deductible
as business
expenses. Trade magazines, manuals and catalogs and the like dedicated to
one's
line of business would be examples of deductible subscriptions and
purchases would be classified as subcription or trade publications
expenses. However,
subcriptions to your local paper or Newsweek, People mag or the like would
not be
deductible so the first thing one has to do is distinguish between what is
a deductible
business expense as opposed to a personal expense which is not deductible,
even it
they are for use by your customers to pass time until their appointment
(as in a doctor's
office). David Bemiss, CMA, EA
You are making broad assumtions that are not true.
 
H

HeyBub

Bounce said:
For example, if I buy a hammer or saw, I know these fall under office
supplies or tools & equipments (I created this one). However, if I
buy a material like magazine subscription, books, etc., where would I
put it as a deductible expense?

I will take the answer here in the newsgoup, not by email.
If you don't want to dump it into "Misc Expenses," you could name it
"Reference Material." We have both "Books" and "Dues & Subscriptions" (like
for trade organizations, and The Bare Bottom Bunny Club).
 
A

aps

HeyBub said:
If you don't want to dump it into "Misc Expenses," you could name it
"Reference Material." We have both "Books" and "Dues & Subscriptions" (like
for trade organizations, and The Bare Bottom Bunny Club).
I do not endorse the use of an account "Miscellaneous Expenses" by any of my
clients. This often results in things that are just, as you say, "dumped" in simply
because those believe there is no expense account to charge the expense to. There
is always an expense account to charge an expense item. I suggest never using
Miscellaneous Expense in your chart of accounts.
 
H

Haskel LaPort

I do not endorse the use of an account "Miscellaneous Expenses" by any of
my
clients. This often results in things that are just, as you say, "dumped"
in simply
because those believe there is no expense account to charge the expense
to. There
is always an expense account to charge an expense item. I suggest never
using
Miscellaneous Expense in your chart of accounts.
As an accountant I always recommend the inclusion of a G/L account called
"Miscellaneous", to be used when the client does not know where to post a
particular transaction. Naturally when it is my turn to work on the books I
make sure any amounts posted to this account are reclassified.
 
Ad

Advertisements

Q

QBConsultant

in message


As an accountant I always recommend the inclusion of a G/L account called
"Miscellaneous", to be used when the client does not know where to post a
particular transaction. Naturally when it is my turn to work on the books I
make sure any amounts posted to this account are reclassified.



- Hide quoted text -

- Show quoted text -- Hide quoted text -

- Show quoted text -
I agree--by having the client post it to misc exp, it allows the
client to keep working and we can 'clean it up later'. Plus, it is
easier to find when the transactions are all in one place instead of
posted everywhere! QB even has an account called 'Ask my Accountant'
now!

Michelle L. Long, CPA, MBA
Author of: Successful QuickBooks Consulting: The Complete Guide to
Starting and Growing a QuickBooks Consulting Business
http://www.SuccessfulQuickBooksConsulting.com
http://www.amazon.com/Successful-QuickBooks-Consulting-Comprehensive-Starting/dp/1434810690
 
A

aps

QBConsultant said:
I agree--by having the client post it to misc exp, it allows the
client to keep working and we can 'clean it up later'. Plus, it is
easier to find when the transactions are all in one place instead of
posted everywhere! QB even has an account called 'Ask my Accountant'
now!

Michelle L. Long, CPA, MBA
Author of: Successful QuickBooks Consulting: The Complete Guide to
Starting and Growing a QuickBooks Consulting Business
http://www.SuccessfulQuickBooksConsulting.com
http://www.amazon.com/Successful-QuickBooks-Consulting-Comprehensive-Startin=
g/dp/1434810690
I worked 6 years for a large regional CPA firm and most of my work was in the
healthcare and banking fields. I would issue management letters and one thing I would
notice is the comments made after each audit were the same each year. When you
make numerous journal entries just to clean up the books in order to audit them, I felt
we were auditing our own work. Sometimes the Miscellaneous Expense account was
larger in terms of dollar amount than most of the other expense accounts and would get
larger each year. Even at that, other accounts would, in some cases, have
mispostings to wrong accounts. The mindset of the client was, "just leave it for the
auditors, they will take care of it". Why allow the client to just continue to do it
incorrectly instead of showing them where it should be posted year after year after
year? To me, I want my clients to understand the "whys" of what they are doing, not
just doing something with blinders on and never question or scrutinize their work. True,
it would be naive to say there is no miscellaneous or sundry items, but they should be
nominal in terms of dollars few in number. Educate your clients, don't let them just do it
wrong each year. In this way, they will appreciate it more if you 'educate' them on the
fly.
 
H

HeyBub

aps said:
I do not endorse the use of an account "Miscellaneous Expenses" by
any of my clients. This often results in things that are just, as
you say, "dumped" in simply because those believe there is no expense
account to charge the expense to. There is always an expense account
to charge an expense item. I suggest never using Miscellaneous
Expense in your chart of accounts.
Well, of course I agree, with the concept. In actually RUNNING a business,
instead of just monitoring its activities, there comes a time when nothing
seems to fit. It seems silly to have a G/L account for "Mole remediation."
 
G

Golden California Girls

HeyBub said:
Well, of course I agree, with the concept. In actually RUNNING a business,
instead of just monitoring its activities, there comes a time when nothing
seems to fit. It seems silly to have a G/L account for "Mole remediation."
"Oh you can't put that in with the gardener's bill! That would make our May
costs be off as it won't match last year so we can't compare it. You'll have to
find some other place for it!" We've all heard that one from a client.

Now if you had selected "earthquake remediation" or "tornado cleanup" we might
have something to talk about. Of course "golf tee's" is a more likely thing to
really run into. And we know where it really belongs, but you get fired if you
put it there. Office expense, the real miscellaneous account.
 
A

aps

HeyBub said:
Well, of course I agree, with the concept. In actually RUNNING a business,
instead of just monitoring its activities, there comes a time when nothing
seems to fit. It seems silly to have a G/L account for "Mole remediation."
Seems to me a better name would be "Pest Control".
 
Ad

Advertisements

A

aps

Golden California Girls said:
"Oh you can't put that in with the gardener's bill! That would make our May
costs be off as it won't match last year so we can't compare it. You'll have to
find some other place for it!" We've all heard that one from a client.

Now if you had selected "earthquake remediation" or "tornado cleanup" we might
have something to talk about. Of course "golf tee's" is a more likely thing to
really run into. And we know where it really belongs, but you get fired if you
put it there. Office expense, the real miscellaneous account.
Common sense is a lot of what accounting is all about.
 
M

Mark Bole

aps said:
Well first of all, not ALL magazine and book subscriptions are deductible as business
expenses.
Of course not, just the ordinary and necessary ones ("necessary" does
not mean "indispensable", per IRS Pub 535).

Trade magazines, manuals and catalogs and the like dedicated to one's
line of business would be examples of deductible subscriptions and
purchases would be classified as subcription or trade publications expenses.
Yes, Pub 535 specifically mentions those.
However,
subcriptions to your local paper or Newsweek, People mag or the like would not be
deductible so the first thing one has to do is distinguish between what is a deductible
business expense as opposed to a personal expense which is not deductible, even it
they are for use by your customers to pass time until their appointment (as in a doctor's
office). David Bemiss, CMA, EA
A daily newspaper delivered to a breakfast cafe, Newsweek or People at a
fast-oil-change place, general-circulation gossip and style magazines at
a hair salon, a TV in a bank lobby showing cable news and entertainment,
satellite radio piped into the entire workplace -- I'm curious how in
the world you might come up with any or all of these being personal,
non-business expenses?

Even if the employees have time to browse the magazines on the job,
that's just de minimis fringe benefit with no tax impact.

-Mark Bole
 
L

Laura

Mark Bole said:
Of course not, just the ordinary and necessary ones ("necessary" does not
mean "indispensable", per IRS Pub 535).

Trade magazines, manuals and catalogs and the like dedicated to one's

Yes, Pub 535 specifically mentions those.


A daily newspaper delivered to a breakfast cafe, Newsweek or People at a
fast-oil-change place, general-circulation gossip and style magazines at a
hair salon, a TV in a bank lobby showing cable news and entertainment,
satellite radio piped into the entire workplace -- I'm curious how in the
world you might come up with any or all of these being personal,
non-business expenses?

Even if the employees have time to browse the magazines on the job, that's
just de minimis fringe benefit with no tax impact.
And what if there were no employees? Would you call these a business
deduction or something used personally by the business owner?
 
A

aps

Mark Bole said:
Of course not, just the ordinary and necessary ones ("necessary" does
not mean "indispensable", per IRS Pub 535).

Trade magazines, manuals and catalogs and the like dedicated to one's

Yes, Pub 535 specifically mentions those.


A daily newspaper delivered to a breakfast cafe, Newsweek or People at a
fast-oil-change place, general-circulation gossip and style magazines at
a hair salon, a TV in a bank lobby showing cable news and entertainment,
satellite radio piped into the entire workplace -- I'm curious how in
the world you might come up with any or all of these being personal,
non-business expenses?

Even if the employees have time to browse the magazines on the job,
that's just de minimis fringe benefit with no tax impact.

-Mark Bole
I think you are splitting hairs. Your professional library can be a source of tax
deductions. Books, magazines, and journals related to your field can be deducted.
Some of your other expenses that may be deducted include union dues, insurance,
and professional licensing fees.

Magazines like People, US, Entertainment Weekly have no trade or professional
connection whatsoever, yet you may find them in a doctor's office. Others such as
magazines related to personal hygiene, childrens health or others similar would be
deductible because they are integrally related to the doctor's profession and the health
of his customers (patients). Muzak piped into a doctor's office would arguably be
deductible because the case can be made it has a calming effect.. Pictures hung on
the ceiling in a dentist's office which are deemed to have a calming effect on patient's
while receiving treatment also would be deductible. Realistically, these are probably
items that get thrown in 'Miscellaneous Expense" anyway.
 
D

dpb

aps wrote:
....
I think you are splitting hairs. Your professional library can be a source of tax
deductions. Books, magazines, and journals related to your field can be deducted.
Some of your other expenses that may be deducted include union dues, insurance,
and professional licensing fees.

Magazines like People, US, Entertainment Weekly have no trade or professional
connection whatsoever, yet you may find them in a doctor's office. Others such as
magazines related to personal hygiene, childrens health or others similar would be
deductible because they are integrally related to the doctor's profession and the health
of his customers (patients). Muzak piped into a doctor's office would arguably be
deductible because the case can be made it has a calming effect.. Pictures hung on
the ceiling in a dentist's office which are deemed to have a calming effect on patient's
while receiving treatment also would be deductible. Realistically, these are probably
items that get thrown in 'Miscellaneous Expense" anyway.
I'd say you're the one trying to place too fine a point on it. There's
absolutely no reason any magazine subscription for the waiting room of a
physician isn't deductible as an expense as it is place there for the
placation of clients, not for personal use. The subject matter is
immaterial for this purpose.

Professional books, dues, etc., are a different animal entirely.

--
 
Ad

Advertisements

M

Mark Bole

Laura said:
And what if there were no employees? Would you call these a business
deduction or something used personally by the business owner?
[in reply also to aps]

Would you [aps] consider the expense of providing free wifi access at a
coffeeshop a deductible business expense? After all, it has nothing to
do with brewing coffee, nor is it necessary to serve the customers or
take their payments.

If "ordinary and necessary" for the business, they are a legitimate
business deduction per IRS pub 535. "Ordinary" means common and
accepted in your industry, so that test certainly passes for a doctor's
waiting room. "Necessary" means helpful and appropriate. If my
appointments unavoidably run late sometimes, and providing
general-purpose reading material helps placate my clients by giving them
something to do instead of wasting time on my account, that is helpful
and appropriate and passes the test also.

If I grab one of the magazines to read while eating lunch at my desk,
that is a de minimis fringe benefit, whether employee or owner.

Now, if I don't have a customer waiting area associated with my
business, then the test probably won't pass. Or, if I subscribe to
expensive magazines that are obscure and of little interest to the
general public (for example, not found at most newstands or bookstores),
that might be challenged. If I subscribe to 300 magazines, that's
probably not ordinary.

If I subscribe to the magazines at my home address and then bring them
in when I'm done with them, that would be part personal, part business
use, and of course the fair market value for deduction purposes at the
time I bring the old magazines into the office would be almost zero.

If the magazines have lasting value for collectors and I bring them home
after they've been in the waiting room for a while, that's disposition
of business assets, let's not go there! ;-)

-Mark Bole
 
A

aps

Mark Bole said:
Laura said:
Mark Bole said:
aps wrote:
[...]
Well first of all, not ALL magazine and book subscriptions are
deductible as business expenses.

Of course not, just the ordinary and necessary ones ("necessary" does
not mean "indispensable", per IRS Pub 535).

Even if the employees have time to browse the magazines on the job,
that's just de minimis fringe benefit with no tax impact.
And what if there were no employees? Would you call these a business
deduction or something used personally by the business owner?
[in reply also to aps]

Would you [aps] consider the expense of providing free wifi access at a
coffeeshop a deductible business expense? After all, it has nothing to
do with brewing coffee, nor is it necessary to serve the customers or
take their payments.

If "ordinary and necessary" for the business, they are a legitimate
business deduction per IRS pub 535. "Ordinary" means common and
accepted in your industry, so that test certainly passes for a doctor's
waiting room. "Necessary" means helpful and appropriate. If my
appointments unavoidably run late sometimes, and providing
general-purpose reading material helps placate my clients by giving them
something to do instead of wasting time on my account, that is helpful
and appropriate and passes the test also.

If I grab one of the magazines to read while eating lunch at my desk,
that is a de minimis fringe benefit, whether employee or owner.

Now, if I don't have a customer waiting area associated with my
business, then the test probably won't pass. Or, if I subscribe to
expensive magazines that are obscure and of little interest to the
general public (for example, not found at most newstands or bookstores),
that might be challenged. If I subscribe to 300 magazines, that's
probably not ordinary.

If I subscribe to the magazines at my home address and then bring them
in when I'm done with them, that would be part personal, part business
use, and of course the fair market value for deduction purposes at the
time I bring the old magazines into the office would be almost zero.

If the magazines have lasting value for collectors and I bring them home
after they've been in the waiting room for a while, that's disposition
of business assets, let's not go there! ;-)

-Mark Bole
I am a doctor. I go to the bookstore, buy People mag and subscribe for 1 year. How
does placing it in my office as opposed to leaving it at home make it deductible?
 
H

Haskel LaPort

Mark Bole said:
Laura said:
aps wrote:
[...]
Well first of all, not ALL magazine and book subscriptions are
deductible as business expenses.

Of course not, just the ordinary and necessary ones ("necessary" does
not mean "indispensable", per IRS Pub 535).
Even if the employees have time to browse the magazines on the job,
that's just de minimis fringe benefit with no tax impact.

And what if there were no employees? Would you call these a business
deduction or something used personally by the business owner?
[in reply also to aps]

Would you [aps] consider the expense of providing free wifi access at a
coffeeshop a deductible business expense? After all, it has nothing to
do with brewing coffee, nor is it necessary to serve the customers or
take their payments.

If "ordinary and necessary" for the business, they are a legitimate
business deduction per IRS pub 535. "Ordinary" means common and
accepted in your industry, so that test certainly passes for a doctor's
waiting room. "Necessary" means helpful and appropriate. If my
appointments unavoidably run late sometimes, and providing
general-purpose reading material helps placate my clients by giving them
something to do instead of wasting time on my account, that is helpful
and appropriate and passes the test also.

If I grab one of the magazines to read while eating lunch at my desk,
that is a de minimis fringe benefit, whether employee or owner.

Now, if I don't have a customer waiting area associated with my
business, then the test probably won't pass. Or, if I subscribe to
expensive magazines that are obscure and of little interest to the
general public (for example, not found at most newstands or bookstores),
that might be challenged. If I subscribe to 300 magazines, that's
probably not ordinary.

If I subscribe to the magazines at my home address and then bring them
in when I'm done with them, that would be part personal, part business
use, and of course the fair market value for deduction purposes at the
time I bring the old magazines into the office would be almost zero.

If the magazines have lasting value for collectors and I bring them home
after they've been in the waiting room for a while, that's disposition
of business assets, let's not go there! ;-)

-Mark Bole
I am a doctor. I go to the bookstore, buy People mag and subscribe for 1
year. How
does placing it in my office as opposed to leaving it at home make it
deductible?
It does what it does.
 
Ad

Advertisements

D

dpb

aps wrote:
....
I am a doctor. I go to the bookstore, buy People mag and subscribe for 1 year. How
does placing it in my office as opposed to leaving it at home make it deductible?
Intent and process -- order it as "professional" subscription (much
cheaper altho not required) from the business for the waiting room and
have it delivered there.

If you have a personal subscription delivered to the house, that's a
different animal.

--
 

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments. After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.

Ask a Question

Similar Threads

Book deduction 0
USA Booking Assets 2
Magazines 2
Magazine subscription 2
Are finance books tax deductible 2
Are books for work tax deductible? 5
Lease Accounting in lessor books 2
USA E-book about Managerial Accounting 0

Top