Meager volunteer mileage relief proposed in House bill

Relief for reimbursed volunteers


Under current rules, volunteers reimbursed by their charities are subject to tax if they receive more than 14 cents per mile for their volunteer mileage.
Rep. Tom Petri (R-Wisconsin) thinks this taxing of volunteers is unfair and discourages volunteering.

On Mar 15, 2013, Petri introduced legislation (H.R. 1212) seeking to change the treatment of reimburse charitable miles. The bill has been referred to the House Ways and Means Committee. Petri introduced similar legislation in 2011 (H.R. 387). It died in committee.

No help for unreimbursed volunteer mileage

Volunteer mileage is now deductible at 14 cents per mile. Less than a quarter of the 56.5 cents per mile for business mileage.
The legislation does not change the 14 cents per mile rate. So, unless you are reimbursed for your volunteer mileage, the legislation won’t help you.

The 14 cents rate for volunteer mileage is ludicrous. The volunteer’s alternative is to calculate the actual variable costs of their volunteer mileage. See our What can a charity volunteer deduct page for the history of mileage rates and the actual variable costs rule.

Why not bring the volunteer mileage rate in line with the business rate? That would be a boost to all volunteers, not just those who are reimbursed.

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What do you think? Want to see the volunteer rate changed? Are you reimbursed for volunteer miles?

Share your thoughts and experiences in the Leave a Reply / Comments section below.


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