Close to one year after cell phones were removed from the “listed property” category of Code Sec. 280F, IRS has issued an audit memorandum which explains the practical consequences of the change. In sum, where an employer provides employees with cell phones primarily for noncompensatory business reasons, neither the business nor personal use of the phone results in income to the employee, and no recordkeeping of usage is required.
Also, in most instances, an employer’s reimbursement to employees for their providing a cell phone for bona fide business use won’t be taxable. The guidance applies for all tax years after Dec. 31, 2009. Notice 2011-72, 2011-38 IRB ; IR 2011-93
You can see the full IRS audit memorandum here.Back to news