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Recruitment consultant expenses P–S

Details on claiming recruitment consultant expenses.

Last updated 2 June 2024

Parking fees and tolls

You can't claim a deduction for parking at or near a regular place of work. You also can't claim a deduction for tolls you incur for trips between your home and regular place of work. This is a private expense.

You can claim a deduction for parking fees and tolls you incur on work-related trips.

Example: non-deductible parking fees

Vanessa is a recruitment consultant. She prefers to park in an outdoor cark park next to her office each day so her commute to and from work is minimal.

Vanessa can't claim a deduction for parking near her regular place of work. This is a private expense.

End of example


Example: deductible parking fees and tolls

Cynthia is a recruitment consultant. As part of her job, she is required to drive from her regular office to visit clients at their business locations. On these work-related trips she incurs parking fees and tolls.

Cynthia can claim a deduction for these parking fees and tolls because she incurs the cost during work-related travel.

If her employer reimburses her for these expenses she can't claim a deduction.

End of example

Phone, data and internet expenses

You can claim a deduction for phone, data and internet costs if you use your own phone or electronic devices for work purposes.

If your phone, data and internet use for work is incidental and you're not claiming more than $50 in total, you do not need to keep records.

If you claim more than $50, you need to keep records to show your work use. For example, an itemised bill where you can identify your work-related phone calls and data use.

You can’t claim a deduction if your employer:

  • provides you with a phone for work and pays for your usage
  • reimburses you for the costs you incur.

You can't claim a deduction for any phone calls to family and friends, even while travelling for work. This is because they are personal phone calls.

If all or part of your work-related phone, data and internet expenses are incurred as a result of working from home and you use the fixed rate method to claim your working from home deductions, you can't claim a separate deduction for these expenses.

For more information, see:

Example: calculating phone expenses

Madison is a recruitment consultant and she uses her personal mobile phone for work purposes to contact potential candidates and her own clients. She is on a set mobile plan of $69 a month and rarely exceeds the plan cap.

She receives an itemised bill from her phone provider each month which includes details of her individual phone calls.

Madison regularly prints out her monthly bill and for one month she highlights her work-related phone calls. She also makes notes on her highlighted itemised bill about who she has called – for example her manager or her clients.

Out of the 350 phone calls she made in a 4-week period, Madison works out 210 (60%) of the individual phone calls are for work. She applies that percentage to her cap amount of $69 a month.

Madison calculates her phone calls for work purposes as follows:

Total work phone calls ÷ total number of phone calls = work use percentage for phone calls

210 ÷ 350 = 0.60 (that is 60%)

Since Madison was only at work for 48 weeks of the year (11 months), she calculates her work-related mobile phone expenses deduction as follows:

11 months × $69 × 0.60 = $455.40

End of example


Example: work and private use

Simon uses his computer and personal internet account at home to access his work emails, manage his appointments and complete additional work at home. Simon uses his computer and internet for both work and private purposes. He pays $120 per month for his internet plan.

Simon keeps a diary for a four-week period, recording the times he used the internet for work and private purposes. Simon's internet use diary showed 30% of his internet usage was for work-related activities and 70% was for private use.

As Simon worked for 11 months during the income year, Simon calculates his deduction as:

$120 × 11 months = $1,320

$1,320 × 0.30 = $396 as work-related internet use

End of example

Removal and relocation expenses

You can’t claim a deduction for the cost to transfer or relocate to a new work location. This is the case whether the move is a condition of your existing job or you are taking up a new job.

Example: relocating due to transfer

Cathy is a recruitment consultant located in Canberra. She is temporarily transferred to another consulting position in Sydney for 2 years by her employer.

Cathy can't claim a deduction for her relocation costs, rent or other living expenses.

End of example

Repairs to tools and equipment

You can claim a deduction for repairs to tools and equipment, for example a laptop, you use for work. If you also use them for private purposes, you can only claim an amount of the repair that relates to your work-related use.

For example, if you use your laptop 50% for work purposes and you need to get it repaired, you can only claim 50% of the repair cost as a deduction.

Self-education expenses

You can claim a deduction for self-education expenses if it directly relates to your employment as a recruitment consultant and at the time you incur the expense it:

  • maintains or improves the skills and knowledge you need for your current duties
  • results in or is likely to result in an increase in your income from your current employment.

You can't claim a deduction for a self-education expense if at the time you incur the expense it either:

  • doesn't have a connection with your current employment
  • only relates in a general way to your current employment
  • enables you to get employment or change employment.

If your self-education expenses are deductible, you can claim expenses such as course or tuition fees, student and amenities fees, textbooks, academic journals and stationery expenses. You will also be able to claim a deduction for the decline in value of any depreciating assets (for example, a laptop or a computer) which cost more than $300 that you use for your work-related study.

If you study at home, you may also be able to claim work from home running expenses, but not occupancy expenses.

You can't claim a deduction for the repayments you make on your study or training support loan. Study and training support loans include:

  • Higher Education Loan Program (HELP) (FEE-HELP and HECS-HELP)
  • VET Student Loans (VSL)
  • Australian Apprenticeship Support Loans (AASL) (formerly Trade Support Loans (TSL))
  • Student Financial Supplement Scheme (SFSS)
  • Student Start-up Loan (SSL).

While course or tuition fees may be deductible, fees you incur under the Higher Education Contribution Scheme Higher Education Loan Program (HECS-HELP) scheme are not deductible.

Example: self-education not related to current employment

Damon is an employee recruitment consultant and is wanting to start his own recruitment firm. As he has not run his own business before, he decides to do a Diploma in Business at his local TAFE which focuses on the skills required to do this.

Damon can't claim a deduction for the course and associated expenses as it does not directly relate to his current employment as a Recruitment consultant.

End of example


Example: study to improve knowledge and skills in current job

Stephanie has been working as a recruitment consultant for 4 months. She is wanting to further develop her interviewing skills and some general recruitment consulting basics.

Her employer has suggested that she take the Recruitment Consulting Certificate through the RCSA which is a comprehensive training package for consultants new to the industry with less than 6 months experience.

Stephanie's employer doesn't pay for the course or reimburse her for the costs she incurs to attend the course.

Stephanie can claim a deduction for the course and associated expenses she incurs. The course will enable Stephanie to improve the skills and knowledge she requires to carry out her current employment duties.

End of example


Example: self-education not related to current duties

Robert is working as a receptionist at a recruitment consulting firm. His duties include answering phone calls, managing appointments and other general administration tasks.

Robert decides he wants to pursue a career in the recruitment industry and enrols in a Bachelor of Business (Human Resource Management).

Robert can't claim a deduction for the cost he incurs for his Bachelor of Business (Human Resource Management). This is because the course does not relate to his current duties as a receptionist.

End of example


Example: Study resulting in increased income

Isabelle is currently employed in a niche recruitment agency. To be promoted above her current position and be paid the resulting pay rise, Isabelle needs to successfully complete a Certificate IV in Employment Services.

Isabelle discusses the prospect of promotion with her manager who provides her with an understanding that if she enrols and successfully completes a Certificate IV in Employment Services, she will get a promotion and the corresponding pay rise.

Isabelle can claim a deduction for the costs she incurs in undertaking the Certificate IV Employment services course as it will lead to an increase in income from her current employment.

End of example

Seminars, conferences and training courses

You can claim a deduction for the cost of seminars and conferences and training courses that relate to your work as a recruitment consultant.

The costs you can claim includes fares to attend the venue where the seminar, conference or training course is held and registration costs. If you need to travel and stay away from home overnight to attend such an event, you can also claim the cost of accommodation and meals.

You may not be able to claim all of your expenses if attending a seminar, conference or training course is for both work-related and private purposes. If the private purpose is incidental, such as a catered lunch or a reception for delegates, you can still claim all your expenses. However, if the main purpose is not work-related, such as attending a conference while on a holiday, you can only claim the direct costs. Direct costs include the registration costs.

Where you have a dual purpose for attending the seminar, conference or training course you can only claim the work-related portion of the expenses. For example, you add a holiday of one week to a training course that runs for one week.

Example: deductible conference and record keeping

Tony is a recruitment consultant, and attends a workshop through the Recruitment, Consulting and Staffing Association (RCSA) on perfecting the art of the client visit. He pays for the course himself.

The course enables Tony to maintain or increase his knowledge, capabilities or skills needed to earn his income in his current employment. Tony can a claim a deduction for the cost attending the workshop.

End of example


You can claim a deduction for the cost of logbooks, diaries and pens that you use for work. For example, to take notes during client meetings.

You can't claim a deduction if your employer provides or reimburses you for these items.

For more recruitment consultant expenses, see: