Q. My son is in the military. Can he deduct upkeep for uniforms? J.M., Tucson, Ariz.
A. Not usually. For instance, deductions aren’t allowed if you must wear the uniform when you’re on duty and you are permitted to wear it when off duty. However, if you’re prohibited by regulations from wearing certain uniforms when you’re off duty, you may deduct expenses of maintaining and cleaning those uniforms. Also, this covers articles that aren’t replacements for regular clothing, such as insignia of rank, corps devices, swords, etc. If this applies, your son must reduce the deduction by any reimbursement he receives.
Tip: Similar tax rules apply to uniforms used by taxpayers in the Reserve.