With the end of the 2019 financial year approaching, Individual taxpayers should now be collating information on the tax deductions to be claim in their tax return, which include:
Two methods can be used to calculate the tax deduction available for motor vehicles where it is used for business purposes:
- claiming 68c cents per business km travelled (up to 5,000 business kms) – you should keep a list of trips; or
- Keeping a logbook to determine the percentage of business use which can be multiplied by the total cost of running the vehicle – ensure that you record odometer readings at the start and end of the year and retain documentary evidence of your expenses.
Other travel expenses
Any work related travel expenses (local, interstate, overseas) may be deductible if not reimbursed by your employer – note substantiation requirements apply
Home office expenses
You can claim home office expenses including electricity, depreciation of computers, phones and furniture, work-related phone calls and internet usage either by substantiating your expenses or claiming 52cents per hour based on a diary kept for 12 weeks.
Occupancy expenses including rent, mortgage interest, council rates and house insurance premiums can only be claimed where your home office is a genuine place of business.
Other work-related expenses
You may be able to claim:
- union fees
- subscriptions to work related associations
- seminars and conferences
- books and magazines,
- stationery and computer consumables
- income protection insurance premiums
- depreciation on tools of your trade
- protective clothing and footwear
- computers and software
- ask your accountant if work-related expenses for specific industries may apply.
Work-related clothing, laundry and cleaning expenses
You may be able to claim the cost of buying or cleaning occupation specific or protective clothes or distinctive uniforms. Normal clothing even if bought specifically for work use will not be eligible.
Self-education expenses may be deductible although a non-deductible threshold of $250 applies to many such costs.
Personal superannuation contribution expenses
If your employer has not paid super contributions to the annual cap of $25,000 you may be able to top up the contributions personally. If you are interested in making such a contribution please contact your adviser as there are traps involved and documentation to complete.
There are several expenses which appear to relate to your work but which you cannot claim including:
travel between your home and your primary workplace;
- expenses for a uniform consisting of conventional clothing;
- self-education expenses where the course does not have sufficient connection to your current employment;
- any expenses which are reimbursed by your employer;
- entertainment (e.g. meals, sports event tickets);
- fines or penalties;
- child-care expenses; and
- social club memberships.
We have noticed that The ATO are increasing reviews of claims for work-related expenses, rental property expenses, interest deductions on the private portion of loans and undeclared capital gains.
This is general advice only. If in doubt contact your accountant.
Article written by Winn Croucher Partners Chartered Accountants
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