A doctor spent two weeks doing charity medical work in Mexico. In calculating her taxable income for the year, her accountant deducted as business expenses her roundtrip airline ticket, meals, and a hotel bill for the two-week stay. She was surprised to learn that the accountant, following IRS rules, could not deduct as a cost of the trip the $8,000 of income she lost by being absent from her medical practice for two weeks. She asked the accountant, “Since lost income is not deductible as an expense, should I ignore it when I make my decision next year to go to Mexico for charity work?” Can you give the doctor some advice on decision making?
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