• Education professionals – claiming work-related expenses

    To claim a work-related deduction:

    • you must have spent the money yourself and weren't reimbursed
    • it must be directly related to earning your income
    • you must have a record to prove it.

    However, there are some instances where you have to meet other conditions.

    Claim the correct amount for the year

    • You must have incurred the expense in the year you are claiming the deduction, unless the expense relates to the decline in value (depreciation) of tools or equipment you purchased.
    • When claiming the decline in value of your tools or equipment, you must have used them or had them available for use in the year you are making the claim.
    • You can only claim that part of an expense that relates to your work.

    Remember:

    • When you complete the declaration on your tax return, you are declaring that everything you have told us is true and you can support your claims with written evidence.
    • You are responsible for providing proof of your expenses, even if you use a registered tax agent.

    Reimbursements and allowances

    • If your employer or any other person reimburses you for expenses you have actually incurred, the payment is called a reimbursement. An allowance is not considered to be a reimbursement.
    • You cannot claim a deduction for expenses you incur if those expenses are reimbursed to you by your employer - you do not include a reimbursement on your tax return.
    • If you claim your motor vehicle expenses from your employer using the cents per kilometre method, the amount you receive is considered to be an allowance.
    • Regardless of the amount of an allowance you receive, you can claim only a deduction for the expenses you paid. That is, if you paid $80 in work-related expenses and you received a $100 allowance for those expenses, you can still claim only $80.

    If you received a car allowance or an award transport payment from your employer, you must record the amount you received as income at item 2 on your tax return.

    Evidence to support your claims

    If your total claims add up to more than $300 (excluding claims for car, meal allowance, award transport payment allowance and travel allowance expenses), you must keep written evidence, such as receipts. Your written evidence must show you incurred the full amount of your claim, not just the amount over the first $300.

    If the total amount you are claiming is $300 or less, you do not need to keep receipts, but you must be able to show how you worked out your claims.

      Last modified: 04 May 2017QC 21517