July 23, 2010 12:53 PM Subscribe
Freelance Writer Tax Write-Off Question: I'm a first time independent contractor and want to know how and if I can write-off a laptop.
posted by bluelight to work & money (12 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I started freelance writing a few weeks ago and have made $530 so far. If this keeps up, in the next month and a half or so I'll have made enough to cover the costs of a laptop I'm looking to purchase ($1,000).
I've read about the high self-employment taxes so writing off your expenses is a good incentive to reduce how much tax you'll pay.
I understand that in order to write-off a certain item your total income has to cover how much it costs and the item has to be work-related. I think I can make a strong case as to why I need a $1,000 laptop for this particular freelance writing job.
But I have a feeling that the company I'm writing may go under soon. Hopefully I'll make it over a $1,000 but what if I make it to $1,100 and my job ends? Can I still write off a $1,000 laptop and just pay taxes on $100? Is there anything I should be careful about? And what exactly do I do (yes, I don't know how to do taxes) save the receipt and when the time comes staple it to my tax form?
NOTE: I don't know how much I'll be able to make in total with freelancing nor if there is a minimum amount I need to surpass before one would be expected to pay taxes. Due to some complicated mess, I am going to have to pay taxes on what I make regardless of the amount.