The National Directory of Certified Public Accountants

Ask A CPA - Fringe Benefits

Cell Phones - Employer-Provided

The value of an employer-provided cell phone, provided primarily for noncompensatory business reasons, is excludable from an employee's income as a working condition fringe benefit. Personal use of an employer-provided cell phone, provided primarily for noncompensatory business reasons, is excludable from an employee's income as a de minimis fringe benefit. You provide a cell phone primarily for noncompensatory business purposes if there are substantial business reasons for providing the cell phone. You cannot exclude from an employee's wages the value of a cell phone provided to promote goodwill of an employee, to attract a prospective employee, or as a means of providing additional compensation to an employee.

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