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Employee Meals and Lodging Expenses

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Personal Tax
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  -> Employment Expenses -> Employees meals and lodging expenses

Employees Meals and Lodging Expenses

Transport Employee's Expenses

Income Tax Act s. 8(1)(g)

You can claim meals and lodging expenses, including showers, if all four of the following conditions are met:

  1. work for an airline, railway, bus, or trucking company, or for any other employer whose main business is transporting goods, passengers, or both.
  2. travel in vehicles that the employer uses to transport goods or passengers
  3. regularly have to travel away from the municipality and the metropolitan area (if there is one) where your employer's home terminal is located.
  4. regularly incur meal and lodging expenses while travelling away from the municipality where the employer's home terminal is located.  That is, must generally be away from home overnight to do the job.

Travel Expenses

Income Tax Act s. 8(1)(h)

If all of the above four conditions for transport employees are not met, it still may be possible to claim travelling expenses (meals and lodging, but not motor vehicle expenses) incurred, if you meet all of these conditions:

bulletYou were normally required to work away from your employer's place of business or in different places.
bulletYou were required by your contract of employment to pay your own travelling expenses.
bulletYou did not receive a non-taxable allowance for travelling expenses.
bulletCRA form T2200, Declaration of Conditions of Employment, must be completed by the employee and employer.

Meal expenses can be deducted if your employer requires you to be away for at least 12 consecutive hours from the municipality/metropolitan area of your employer's location where you normally report for work.

Expenses of Railway Employees

Income Tax Act s. 8(1)(e)

The cost of meals and lodging, for which you have not been reimbursed, and are not entitled to be reimbursed, can be claimed if you meet one of the following two conditions:

bulletYou work away from home for a railway company, as a telegrapher or station agent, in a relief capacity, or carrying out maintenance and repair work for the railway company, or
bulletYou are a railway employee who
bulletworks away from the municipality/metropolitan area where your home terminal located, and
bulletworks at such a distant location that it is unreasonable for you to return daily to your home, where you support a spouse, common-law partner, or dependent related to you.

How to Claim the Meals and Lodging Expenses

These expenses are claimed on the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) form TL2 Claim for Meals and Lodging Expenses.

bulletmeals can be claimed using the simplified method (see CRA information on meals and lodging expenses for employees), under which receipts are not required, but a log of travel is required.  Under this method, the  allowable amount for meals is
bullet$17 per meal, 
bulletone meal after every 4 hours from the departure time, to a maximum of 3 meals per day
bulletmeals are 50% deductible, except for meal costs during eligible travel periods of long-haul truck drivers, which are deductible (under ITA s. 67.1(1.1)), by the trucker or by an employer who may have paid the expenses, at the following rates:
bullet65% for 2008
bullet70% for 2009
bullet75% for 2010, and
bullet80% for 2011 or later.

The meals and lodging costs will include GST/HST and any provincial retail sales tax paid.  You may be eligible for a refund of the GST/HST included in the costs.  See Employee and Partner GST/HST rebate on the GST/HST page.

Line 229 employment expenses can be entered in the "other deductions" line of the Canadian Tax and RRSP Savings Calculator.

CRA Resources:

    - Transportation employees

    - IC73-21R9 Claims for Meals and Lodging Expenses of Transport Employees

    - Line 229 Other Employment Expenses

    - T4044 Employment Expenses

    - Interpretation Bulletins (Archived):

          - IT518R Food, Beverages and Entertainment Expenses

          - IT-522R Vehicle, Travel and Sales Expenses of Employees

Revised: November 01, 2017

 

 

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