Decoding the “50 mile rule” for traveling advanced practitioners

Jan 16, 2018

One of our most commonly asked questions is “What distance must I live from a facility to work as a travel NP or travel PA?”

The common myth about travel positions is that that IRS regulates how far away you must live to collect the tax-free stipends of a travel nurse or travel PA. The IRS does not have a specific 50-mile-rule, but many facilities use 50 miles as a rule-of-thumb to keep their full time providers from picking up travel assignments themselves.

At NEXTLocums we use the 50 mile radius rule to employ our travel NPs and travel PAs. This allows us to ensure that our providers can collect those tax free stipends like housing & travel expenses if qualifications are met.

One of these qualifications is having a “tax home”. A tax home is the home you return to on a regular basis where you have reoccurring expenses (mortgage, rent, electric, water, etc.). Having a tax home base qualifies you for travel reimbursements, as there will be a duplication of expenses when you travel for work.

This 50-mile distance is not set in stone and can be looked at on a case-by-case basis depending on metro vs rural commute time. For example, while it would be possible to commute 40 miles in a rural setting with little to no traffic, a 40-mile commute within a major city like LA would be impractical.

At NEXTLocums we have recruiters who specialize in working with advanced practice providers and are well-versed in the ins and outs of travel life. Reach out to us if you have questions regarding one of our assignments and how you can take advantage of higher take-home pay with the tax-free stipends of a traveler.

Another good resource for providers looking to learn more about the government’s current rates for per diem rates is the U.S. General Services Administration. Keep in mind that if you have specific tax questions, it is best to contact a tax advisor.

Visit our job search page by clicking below to find a travel NP or PA position now to take advantage of higher take-home pay.

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