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August 21, 2010
Non-Compensable Driving and Commuting Time

In a BLR webinar entitled "Mileage/Commuting Expenses: How to Avoid Big Mistakes With These Employee Expenses," Mark E. Tabakman, Esq., partner in the nationwide law firm Fox Rothschild, LLP and Stacy Wade, Ph.D., CPA, assistant professor of accounting at Western Kentucky University, explained that, according to a United States Labor Department Opinion Letter, commuting time in the employer's vehicle is not paid work time if:

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  • Commuting in the employer's vehicle is strictly voluntary and not a condition of employment;
  • The vehicle involved is the type of vehicle that would normally be used for commuting;
  • The employee incurs no costs for driving the employer's vehicle or parking it at the employee's home or elsewhere; and
  • The worksites are within the normal commuting area of the employer's establishment.

Mark E. Tabakman, Esq., is a partner in the nationwide law firm Fox Rothschild, LLP ( He advises clients throughout the country on all aspects of labor relations and employment law, as well as the development of corporate employment policies. Stacy Wade, Ph.D., CPA, is assistant professor of accounting at Western Kentucky University ( She teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in financial accounting and taxation.

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