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Legislation Summary:

Support for Telework is gaining momentum in both private and public sectors, several states have adopted telework statutes and many even offer significant tax breaks for those that participate in telework initiatives. On December 9th 2010, President Obama signed into law, the Telework Enhancement Act of 2010 which requires federal agencies to provide support for telecommuting employees by establishing a telework policy, notifying eligible employees to telecommute under the policy and providing a telework training program and website devoted to federal teleworking.

You can learn more about telework legislation and the Telework Enhancement Act at and in the US Department of Personnel Guide to Telework

Telework has also received a lot of attention in the government as it pertains to the private sector. As cited from WorldatWork, “…A pro-telework bill introduced in the 110th Congress was the Home Office Tax Deduction Simplification and Improvement Act (S. 3371 ). This bill offered both telecommuting employees and home-based workers who are self-employed the option to take a standard home office deduction instead of the home office deduction currently offered. Another key measure introduced in the 110th Congress was a telework tax credit proposed by Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) as part of his Transportation and Housing Choices for Gas Price Relief Act (H.R. 6495 ). The credit would have been available to either employers or employees who cover the cost of equipment and services used to enable telework.

In addition to tax credits intended to reduce telework implementation costs, lawmakers in the last Congress also proposed tax credits designed to encourage employers to authorize as many employees as possible to start telecommuting. A bill called the Parents’ Tax Relief Act (S. 816; H.R. 1421 ) included a credit for employers based on a percentage of the wages earned by first-time telecommuters.

The Parents’ Tax Relief Act would also have required that employer-provided computers and related equipment and services be treated as fringe benefits excludable from employees’ gross income under the Internal Revenue Code if: (1) the tools are necessary for telecommuting; and (2) employees make substantial business use of the equipment in their employment.

Other bills introduced that would facilitate telework include the MOBILE Cell Phone Act (S. 2668 (110th Congress)) and the Mobile Wireless Tax Fairness Act (S. 3249 (110th Congress)). The Mobile Cell Phone Act has already been re-introduced in this session (S. 144).”

While the Federal Government is considering a number of these Acts (14 currently) , the IRS, in 2013, introduced a simplified option to calculate home office deductions, making it easier for the teleworker to claim their home office.

Here is a listing of the Top 10 States with telecommuting Tax Incentives

  1. Georgia
  2. California
  3. Illinois
  4. Virginia
  5. Arizona
  1. New York
  2. Washington
  3. Texas
  4. Conneticut
  5. New Jersey

Did you know…Atlanta is considered to be the most telework friendly city in America?  According to Microsoft’s May 2011 report: Work without Walls

Click the icon below to view a comprehensive state by state guide of statutes related to Telework

Click below to view statues for a specific state and state telework resources: