NEWS ALERT: SECTION 179 IS $500,000 FOR 2016
Jan 1, 2016 – The “Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015” (PATH Act) was passed by both the House and Senate and signed into law on 12/18/2015. This bill expanded the Section 179 deduction limit to $500,000.
Section 179 Deduction: Until further notice, Section 179 is permanent at the $500,000 level. Businesses exceeding a total of $2 million of purchases in qualifying equipment have the Section 179 deduction phase-out dollar-for-dollar and completely eliminated above $2.5 million. Additionally, the Section 179 cap will be indexed to inflation in $10,000 increments in future years.
Vehicles and Section 179
One of the more popular uses of the Section 179 Deduction has been for vehicles. In fact, several years ago the Section 179 deduction was sometimes referred to as the “Hummer Tax Loophole,” because at the time it allowed businesses to buy large SUV’s and write them off. While this particular use (or abuse) of the tax code has been modified with the limits explained below, it is still true that Section 179 can be advantageous in buying vehicles for your business (especially if you lease or finance the vehicles).
Vehicles used in your businesses qualify – but certain passenger vehicles have a total depreciation deduction limitation of $11,060, while other vehicles that by their nature are not likely to be used more than a minimal amount for personal purposes qualify for full Section 179 deduction. Here are the general guidelines for using the Section 179 Deduction for vehicle purchases (full policy statement available at: IRS.gov ).
50% Bonus Depreciation will be extended through 2019. Businesses of all sizes will be able to depreciate 50 percent of the cost of equipment acquired and put in service during 2015, 2016 and 2017. Then bonus depreciation will phase down to 40 percent in 2018 and 30 percent in 2019.
IMPORTANT: Section 179 for Current 2016 Tax Year (This Year)
Section 179 can provide you with significant tax relief for this 2016 tax year, but equipment and software must be financed and in place by midnight December 31, 2016. Use this 2016 Section 179 Calculator to see how much the Section 179 tax deduction can save your company.
When Do I Have to Do This By?
Section 179 for 2016 expires midnight, 12/31/2016. If you wish to deduct the full price of your equipment from your 2016 taxes and take advantage of the new higher deduction limits, it must be purchased and put into service by then.
The IRS has not yet released guidance concerning Section 179 and Bonus Depreciation as it relates to vehicles for this year. The guidance will be published in the Internal Revenue Bulletin sometime after mid-year. Be patient, and check back here often for the release date.
For passenger vehicles, trucks, and vans (not meeting the guidelines below), that are used more than 50% in a qualified business use, the total deduction for depreciation including both the Section 179 expense deduction as well as Bonus Depreciation is limited to $11,060 for cars and $11,160 for trucks and vans.
Exceptions include the following vehicles:
- Ambulance or hearse used specifically in your business;
- Taxis, transport vans, and other vehicles used to specifically transport people or property for hire;
- Qualified non-personal use vehicles specifically modified for business (i.e. van without seating behind driver, permanent shelving installed, and exterior painted with company’s name).
Limits for SUVs or Crossover Vehicles with GVWR above 6,000lbs
Certain vehicles (with a gross vehicle weight rating above 6,000 lbs but no more than 14,000 lbs) qualify for expensing up to $25,000 if the vehicle is financed and placed in service prior to December 31 and meet other conditions.