The IRS has released guidance related to the temporary 100-percent deduction for business meals provided by a restaurant. The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 temporarily increased the deduction from 50 percent to 100 percent for a business’s restaurant food and beverage expenses for 2021 and 2022. All other food and beverage expenses are still subject to the 50 percent deduction limitation unless some other exception applies.

Restaurants Defined

The IRS guidance defines a restaurant as a business that prepares and sells food or beverages to retail customers for immediate consumption. Note that the food and beverages do not need to be consumed on the premises for the 100-percent deduction to apply.

Restaurants are not businesses that predominantly sell pre-packaged food or beverages that are intended for later consumption. Food or beverages purchased from such businesses are still subject to the 50-percent deduction limitation. Examples of businesses that are not restaurants include grocery stores, specialty food stores, liquor stores, drug stores, convenience stores, newsstands, vending machines, or kiosks.

Restaurants are also not eating facilities located at an employer’s business that provide meals that are excluded from the employees’ gross income or are considered a de minimis fringe. This definition also applies to eating facilities on the employer’s premises that are operated by a third party.

If you would like assistance on reviewing your tax situation to understand how your business may benefit from the temporary enhancement changes that may apply to business meals deduction, you can contact our office.

Venkat Iyer. CPA(USA). CPA(Canada). MBA

Venkat holds a CPA credential both in the USA and Canada, and he is very proficient in tax and compliance requirements in both countries. He is a Seasoned Business Adviser with 18+ years of extensive experience in diversified industries and accounting firms.He is also very prominent in implementing Lean Principles and Strong Financial Foundations for Hotels and Restaurants. He believes the key to any business success is knowing their indicators and their impact. He has been helping businesses with predictive analytics, transforming data from their enterprise's system for delivering meaningful insights.He is also a Business Automation Expert helping streamline the workflows from marketing to management to ensure optimal business performance.