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  • Common expenses O–P

    Details on claiming common media professional expenses for:

    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 award or enterprise agreement.

    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 payment summary or income statement.

    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 spent and are claiming a deduction:

    • 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 2018/11 Income tax: what are the reasonable travel and overtime meal allowance expense amounts for the 2018–19 income year?

    Pay TV access payment

    You can claim a deduction for the work-related portion of pay TV access payments if you can show that you're required to access pay TV as part of your work. The amount of the deduction is limited to the content that is specific to earning your income.

    Phone and internet expenses

    You can claim the work-related portion of your phone and internet costs if your employer requires you to use your own phone or electronic device.

    You need to keep records to show your work use if you claim more than $50 on phone and internet expenses.

    You can’t claim a deduction if your employer provides you with a phone for work and pays for the usage, or if your employer reimburses you for the costs.

    Example: calculating phone expenses

    Sebastian uses his mobile phone for work purposes. He is on a set plan of $49 a month and rarely exceeds the plan cap.

    He receives an itemised account from his phone provider each month that includes details of his individual calls.

    At least once a year, Sebastian prints out his account and highlights the work-related calls he made. He makes notes on his account for the first month about who he is calling for work – for example, his manager and his clients.

    Out of the 300 calls he has made in a four-week period, Sebastian works out that 240 (80%) of the individual call expenses billed to him are for work and applies that percentage to his cap amount of $49 a month.

    Since Sebastian was only at work for 46 weeks of the year (10.6 months), he calculates his work-related mobile phone expense deduction as follows:

    • 10.6 months × $49 × 80% = $415.52
    End of example

     

    Example: work and private use

    Sylvette uses her computer and personal internet account at home to access her work emails and do research for her work. Sylvette uses her computer and the internet for both work and private purposes.

    Sylvette's internet use diary showed 40% of her internet time was for work-related activities and 60% was for private use. As her internet service provider charge for the year was $1,200 she can claim:

    • $1,200 × 40% = $480 as work-related internet use.
    End of example

    See also:

    For more media professionals' expenses, see:

      Last modified: 05 Apr 2019QC 51250