Useful Life of an Aircraft


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The useful life of an aircraft is an important term relating to the value, and in turn, the tax benefits or detriments, that the aircraft carries.  Over time, the value or usefulness of an aircraft will depreciate.  Tax laws account for this aircraft depreciation, as they do with all other major parts and purchases made by businesses or individuals. 

How is Aircraft Depreciation Calculated?

Aircraft depreciation is estimated on an annual basis, which will coincide with the end of the fiscal year.  For this reason, many individuals and businesses seek counsel from both tax professionals regarding aircraft tax depreciation, as well as aviation attorneys.  Potentially, large write-offs may be possible through the purchase of aircraft for business use, according to GAAP standards.  Aircraft costs, including maintenance and other items, may also prove tax deductible according to GAAP standards.  

Tax Deductions of Useful Life of Equipment

Though the tax relief for aircraft costs seems simple, this is not actually the case.  First, taxation laws and other accounting principles change on a regular basis, as well as the dynamics of any business.  Therefore, the purchase of any aircraft, let alone deciding the amount of useful life left in a given plane, requires specialized legal advice. 

Assets and Depreciation

To determine the usefulness of any tangible asset, in this case a plane requires complete accounting of the depreciation of the aircraft, which may include the depreciation of separate components of an aircraft, rather than the whole craft itself.  The depreciation rate of a given component of an aircraft will most likely widely differ than others, which an aviation attorney is well aware.  Typically, most business owners would rather focus on their core business issues, rather than attempt to calculate depreciation costs on a given aircraft and potentially risk audit and other penalties. 

Therefore, they turn to an aviation attorney with a comprehensive understanding of the tax implications stemming from aircraft depreciation. 

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