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  • Common expenses G–O

    Details on claiming common doctor, specialist or other medical professional expenses for:

    Glasses, contact lenses and anti-glare glasses

    You can't claim a deduction for prescription glasses or contact lenses. These are private expenses.

    See also:

    Grooming

    You can't claim a deduction for hairdressing, cosmetics, or hair and skin care products, even though you may be paid an allowance for grooming and be expected to be well groomed. All grooming products are private expenses.

    Laundry and maintenance

    You can claim a deduction for the cost of washing, drying and ironing clothing you wear at work if it's:

    • protective
    • occupation specific (and not a conventional, everyday piece of clothing)
    • a uniform (non-compulsory registered with AusIndustry and compulsory).

    This also includes laundromat and dry cleaning expenses.

    If your laundry claim is $150 or less, you don't need to keep records but you will still need to be able to explain how you calculated your claim. This isn't an automatic deduction.

    Example: work clothing laundered and maintained by employer

    Nathan is required to wear scrubs when consulting the hospital surgeon on the treatment of his patients. Nathan's scrubs are provided by the hospital and he leaves them in the used scrubs hamper when he changes back into his own clothes to leave the hospital.

    As Nathan doesn't incur any costs for buying, maintaining or cleaning the scrubs he is required to wear, he can't claim a deduction.

    End of example

    See also:

    Meal and snack expenses

    You can't claim a deduction for the cost of food, drink or snacks you consume in the course of your normal working hours, even if you receive a meal allowance. These are private expenses.

    You may be able to claim a deduction for meals when you travel for work – see doctor, specialist or other medical professionals' Travel expenses.

    You may be able to claim a deduction for meals when you work overtime – see doctor, specialist or other medical professionals' Overtime meal expenses.

    Medical equipment

    You can claim a deduction for the cost of medical equipment and the cost of insurance for that equipment. For example, you can claim a deduction for the cost of stethoscopes and scales.

    Overtime meal expenses

    You can claim a deduction for the cost of a meal you buy and eat when you work overtime, if you receive an overtime meal allowance under an industrial law, award or enterprise agreement and it's included in your assessable income.

    You can't claim a deduction if your overtime meal allowance is rolled into your salary and wages and not included as a separate allowance on your income statement or payment summary.

    You are generally required to get and keep written evidence, such as receipts, when you claim a deduction for overtime meal expenses. However, each year we set a reasonable amount you can claim for overtime meal expenses without receipts. If you received an overtime meal allowance, are claiming a deduction and spent:

    • up to the reasonable amount, you don't have to get and keep receipts
    • more than the reasonable amount, you must get and keep receipts for all your expenses.

    In all cases, you need to be able to show:

    • you spent the money
    • how you calculated your claim.

    See also:

    • Overtime meals
    • TD 2019/11 Income tax: what are the reasonable travel and overtime amounts for the 2019–20 income year?

    For more doctor, specialist or other medical professionals' expenses, see:

      Last modified: 01 May 2020QC 56091