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Working with children check

Deductions for the cost of a working with children check if you currently work with children.

Last updated 25 April 2023

When you can claim a working with children check

You can claim a deduction for the cost of a working with children check if you are:

  • an existing employee and need to either obtain or renew a suitability notice to continue to earn assessable income in your position
  • a new employee and your recent employment income is from continuous employment in a child-related field.

Example: new teacher previously employed in child-related employment

Freda receives most of her income in the child-related employment field. For years she has worked at a range of schools as a teacher, employed under a series of temporary contracts. Her last contract ended in March and she accepted another contract at a different school in May of the same year.

The principal of the new school is required to apply for a suitability notice for Freda so that she can start the contract. Freda pays the application fee for the suitability notice to work with children.

Freda can claim the cost of the application as a deduction. Although she is a new employee at this particular school, she has been continuously employed in the child-related employment field and the expense is necessary to her employment.

End of example

When you can't claim a working with children check

If you're a new employee, you can't claim a deduction for the cost of getting an initial working with children check unless you've recently been working in a child-related employment field.

Example: cleaner not previously in child-related employment

Catriona was once employed as a cleaner in a school. However, she has not worked in child-related employment for an extended period, and her suitability notice to work with children has expired. During this time she works as an office cleaner.

Catriona accepts a new position as a cleaner with a school. The principal of the school applies for a suitability notice for her. Catriona pays the application fee.

Catriona can't claim a deduction for the fee. Although her previous employment was child-related, the time elapsed, and the fact that she has since had jobs in other fields of employment, removes the connection between the expense and her income.

She needs the notice to allow her to re-enter the field of child-related employment as a new employee, rather than to preserve the continuity of existing income.

End of example

For more information for Queensland school employees, see CR 2001/38 Income tax: The deductibility for Queensland school employees of the cost of obtaining a suitability notice for working with children.