I work from home. Can I deduct a home office?

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Q. Since the pandemic started, I have worked at home instead of going into my office. I am not reimbursed by my employer. I set aside a small area in my living room where I have a desk, a table and a computer. Am I entitled to a home office deduction for this?
— Worker

A. Many people have been working from home since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

Unfortunately for those employees, the home office deduction isn’t an option.

“Home office expenses are only allowable if you have a business operating from your home,” said Michael Karu, a certified public accountant with Levine, Jacobs & Co. in Livingston. “As an employee, no deduction is allowed.”

Under Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, Karu said, miscellaneous itemized deductions were virtually eliminated.

“Employee business expenses were in that category,” he said.

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This story was originally published on Jan. 13, 2021.

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