The Internal Revenue Service has updated the per diem rates for taxpayers to use in 2012-2013 when substantiating the amount of ordinary and necessary business expenses incurred while traveling away from home.
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The latest per diem rates, outlined in Notice 2012-63, specifically apply to (1) the special transportation industry meal and incidental expenses rates, the rate for the incidental expenses only deduction, and the rates and list of high-cost localities for purposes of the high-low substantiation method.
The special M&IE rates for taxpayers in the transportation industry are $59 for any locality of travel in the continental United States and $65 for any locality of travel outside the continental United States.
The rate for any locality of travel for the incidental expenses only deduction is $5 per day.
For purposes of the high-low substantiation method, the per diem rates are $242 for travel to any high-cost locality and $163 for travel to any other locality within the continental U.S. The amount of the $242 high rate and $163 low rate that is treated as paid for meals for is $65 for travel to any high-cost locality and $52 for travel to any other locality within the continental U.S.
The per diem rates in lieu of the rates described in Section 4.02 of Rev. Proc. 2011-47 (the meal and incidental expenses only substantiation method) are $65 for travel to any high-cost locality and $52 for travel to any other locality within the continental U.S. A number of localities also have a federal per diem rate of $202 or more, and are high-cost localities for all of the calendar year or a portion of the calendar year.