As you start thinking about taxes as a travel nurse, it can quickly feel overwhelming. We have some tips to help you.
1. Be organized. Fortunately modern technology can let you electronically save and organize as you go. Items you need to keep and track include:
- Copies of all your nursing contracts – yes, all of them.
- Receipts – take a photo of each receipt as you get it. Write on the back if you need to remember what it is for and take a picture of that also.
- Mileage – use an app, spreadsheet or notebook to track all the mileage you rack up on assignment. (You can always snap a photo of your odometer before and after each trip to help you calculate.)
2. Understand what is taxable and nontaxable income in your contract. You will most likely have both taxable and nontaxable income – with wages being taxable and items like stipends as non-taxable.
3. Establish and maintain a tax home. A tax home is not where you reside, but the general geographic where you primarily work. The IRS will look at the past 24 months to confirm your tax home.
4. Understand your deductible expenses. Some key deductions to look for include:
- Licensing and education fees
- Malpractice insurance
- Driving expenses
- Transportation costs
- Housing and meals
Tax time doesn’t have to be overwhelming. Remember, you are not alone and there are a number of resources to help!
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