Get the most of out of your tax assessment with these top tips.
Let’s be honest; no one really loves tax time. You need to find and organise old receipts, make appointments with your tax accountant only to remember some items you have forgotten about. So when tax time rolls around, it makes sense that you’ll want to get the best return possible to make the whole ordeal worth your while.
It’s important to remember that claiming tax honestly is completely legal and worthwhile, but don’t get greedy. Over-claiming can lead to a letter from the ATO asking for reimbursement with a hefty fine slapped on… added for good measure. There’s also a good chance that it will cause the taxman to investigate your returns from previous years. To help you understand what you can safely claim to get the best return, we’ve found this handy list.
Tools under $300
As a rule of thumb, if a tool costs less than $300 you’ll be able to write-off 100% as a tax deduction in the year you purchased it. If you know you’re in the market for an upgrade now’s a good time to do it because you won’t have to wait long for your return. Regardless of when you’ve purchased the tool, make sure you keep your receipt.
If you need to take your tools with you for work purposes, you’re eligible to claim running expenses on your car, which includes fuel and servicing.
Ever arrived at a job only to realise you need to pay for parking? Worry not, that’s a deductible expense, though this is only applicable to parking paid for work-related parking and will require receipts.
Despite any urban myths, parking fines cannot be claimed!
Mobile phone expenses
If you use your phone to make work calls, receive work calls or require your phone to be on standby for work, then you can claim on your phone bill.
Make sure you have a way to separate your private and work phone expenses; even if this requires keeping a second phone to conduct your business calls on.
- Protective equipment
If you’re required to wear a specific clothing item for safety on the job, it’s tax deductible. As long as you made the purchase and haven’t had the money reimbursed by your employer (hard hats, high-vis, gloves, steel capped boots, you name it).
Sunglasses and sunscreen
If your job requires you to do prolonged periods of work outdoors, then your sun protection is tax deductible. Just remember, when you purchase your 30+ SPF and your new pair of shades, keep the receipt.
This is a handy one, if you’re required to wear a uniform to work (anything that has a company name on it), then you’re able to claim laundry expenses. It might be worth talking to an accountant first, but the rough estimate is that it costs $1 per load of washing.
A range of courses, upskilling and education can be deductible if it is:
- Less than 12 months
- Paid in full before the end of the financial year
- Relevant to your current job
- Potential to claim payments as a tax deduction
To find out if you’re eligible and get an estimate on your deduction check out the ATO’s handy guide to self-education expenses.
Last but not least, the expenses of lodging last year’s tax return can also be claimed this year. With June 30 fast approaching it’s a great time to get your tax return ready and make any last minute purchases to claim for this financial year.
The information in this blog is general information only and should not be taken as constituting professional advice from the website owner.
We (AQ) are not financial advisers. You should consider seeking independent legal, financial, taxation or other advice to check how the blog information relates to your unique circumstances.
Apprenticeships QLD is not liable for any loss caused, whether due to negligence or otherwise arising from the use of, or reliance on, the information provided directly or indirectly, by use of the contents of this blog.