We all know better then to try to write off these outlandish expenses but it’s fun to see what some people are willing to do in order to save money on their taxes. Here are some of the crazy things people have tried to claim on their taxes, unsuccessfully of course.
- Prostitutes as a “Medical Expense”
A lawyer from New York kept track of his visits with prostitutes in a journal and tried to deduct their “services” as medical expenses. The whopping $65,934 may have tipped off the IRS to a problem.
- Buffalo Meat as a “Business Expense”
A professional bodybuilder from Wisconsin once tried to claim buffalo meat, “posing oil” and protein shakes as business expenses — adding up to more than $4,000… But the court found the meat to be a personal expense because it can be eaten by anyone.
He was, however, able to deduct oils and tanning products, including ProTan Muscle Juice Professional Posing Oil, which he applied to his skin to “enhance his appearance.”
The court allowed these items because they “were marketed only through bodybuilding publications and were not generally for sale through normal marketing outlets.”
- Underwear as a “Business Expense”
A professional musician playing for rock star Rod Stewart’s band once tried to claim men’s underwear as stage clothes.
In addition to underwear, he tried to deduct silk boxers, leather pants, hats and a vest — totaling $695. While he was allowed to deduct some of the “flashy” and “loud” items, the underwear were a definite no, the court ruled.
- Costs associated with Sperm Donation as a “Medical Expense”
A doctor from Massachusetts tried to deduct thousands of dollars in costs for donating his sperm to in vitro fertilization.
But he was denied the deduction, with the court ruling that these donations did not affect his health or body and were therefore not legitimate medical expenses.
- Scientology Classes as a “Business Expense”
A self-employed meat-and-seafood salesman from Sacramento, Calif., tried to deduct a class taught by the Church of Scientology as a business expense, saying it was necessary for his career.
He said that, in total, the 20-day class cost him nearly $1,500 between fees and travel.
The court held that the meat man could have read the same book at home and that that particular class was not absolutely necessary for his work.
These are just a few of the funny things that people have tried to deduct. In some cases the items listed may have been deductible if the situation were different. So though these stories are funny every tax deduction should be analyzed to make sure it is allowed or not allowed. The deductible items should be claimed to assist in reducing tax because you don’t want to miss out on any potential savings. If you have expenses that you may be able to claim you should discuss them with a tax professional before you file.