Ads on Cars

Today TaxMama hears from Don in Florida with a question you’ll like, “ if I have signs made for my car or boat that are physically placed on the vehicles, is just the cost of the sign deductible? Or can you make 100% of your miles/vehicle usage deductible as business miles, since your car/boat is a rolling ad?”


Hi Don

Apparently, so many people have been advised to do that in order to deduct the whole cost of the car, that IRS specifically addresses this in one of their publications.

Here’s the reference:

And here’s what it says:

Advertising display on car. Putting display material that advertises your business on your car does not change the use of your car from personal use to business use. If you use this car for commuting or other personal uses, you still cannot deduct your expenses for those uses.

So, you still get the same deduction for business use that you would get if you didn’t have the advertising on your vehicle.

You may deduct the business miles, if you’re using mileage. Or you may deduct the business percentage of total costs.

I don’t think they have standard mileage/knottage (?) for boats.

And remember, you’ll find answers to lots of questions about auto expenses and other tax information, free. Where? At

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