Questions about Deductions

Further to our article about Frequently asked Questions regarding Income I thought I would offer some explanation regarding Work Related Deductions.

Claiming deductions is a way of decreasing your tax bill.  Always carefully review your spending and employment requirements to determine if you are able to claim any of the following:


Remember the 3 golden rules with regards  to work related deductions:

  1. Make sure you spent the money yourself and were not reimbursed in anyway

  2. Make sure it is related to your employment

  3. Make sure you have a evidence to prove it

Motor Vehicle

  • Yes you can claim a deduction for work related motor vehicle use if you use your motor vehicle in the course of performing your work as an employee.

Uniform, Protective Clothing, Laundry and Dry Cleaning

  • You can claim a deduction for the purchase of any specific uniform items and occupation specific clothing and also for protective clothing used for work. You can also claim a deduction for the laundry and/or dry cleaning of this clothing.

Sun protection items

  • Yes you can claim a deduction for sunscreen cream, hats, sunglasses and other sun protection items for use at work. The claim must be substantiated and adjusted for private use.

Tools of trade

  • You are able to claim expenditure for tools that you use in the earning of your income.  This includes repair, replacement and insurance of these tools.

Books and Journals

  • If you need various technical or trade books or journals to perform your job function efficiently the cost of these can be claimed as a deduction.

Travel Expenses

  • Travel expenses including the cost of transportation, meals and sundries can be claimed as a deduction where they are relevant to your job function.

Self education expenses

  • You can claim as a deduction most costs associated with self education if certain conditions are satisfied.  The most important condition is that the course undertaken is likely to lead to an increase in your assessable income from the same employment.

Home office

  • If a taxpayer carries on all or part of their employment activities from home, then some portion of the home expenses can be deducted.  A rate of 45 cents per hour is currently available to recoup expenditure on heating and electricity for time spent working at home.
  • Where a home is a place of business, deductions can be claimed on the following items of expenditure – interest, rent, house insurance, council rates, heating, lighting, depreciation, insurance, repairs, cleaning, pest control, maintenance, decorating and telephone.  However this may have capital gains tax implications on the sale of your home.
  • Remember when you are working from home and using your internet then the internet provider cost can also be claimed but only the % of time which is work related.
  • You are also able to claim depreciation of your laptop or desk top computer if you are required to use this at home. Once again the cost will need to be apportioned for private use.