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Domestic travel deductions objections

Documents we need to process an objection to our decision about domestic travel (travel within Australia) deductions.

Last updated 25 September 2017

We need specific documents and information to process an objection about domestic travel (travel within Australia) deductions.

Providing this information up front will reduce delays.

If you wish to lodge an objection about a domestic travel deduction, you'll need to:

  • complete and submit the relevant objection form (for taxpayers or tax professionals)
  • provide the supporting information listed below.

See also:

Supporting information required

If you have previously given us any of the information listed below, you don't need to resend it.

The information we need includes:

  • details of your employment duties in the related year and how the travel related to your employment
  • whether your employer requested that you travel, if yes, we need written evidence that you were required to travel as part of your income earning activities, (for example, a letter from your employer)
  • whether you received a travel allowance from anyone, if yes, how much you received
  • evidence of this allowance, such as
    • your payment summary or income statement that shows this allowance
    • a payslip or document provided from your employer which makes clear what this payment is for
  • whether you were reimbursed for any of the expenses incurred, if so, how much you received
  • for each trip
    • the origin and destination of the trip
    • the purpose of the trip
    • did you take leave to travel, if yes, we need to know the type of leave you took
    • the date you left your home, and the date you returned
    • was there a private component, if yes, provide details
    • how you apportioned expenses to cover the private component
    • were you accompanied by anyone, if yes we need to know
      • which trips they accompanied you on
      • your relationship with them
      • what they did while you were doing work-related activities
      • if you claimed, or intend to claim expenses for this person
      • any other calculation you did to apportion your expenses between your portion and the portion of expenses incurred by all of the people accompanying you
    • the expenses you incurred on the trip, including amounts, dates and details of how you calculated these (a separate list should be provided for each expense type included in your claim, for example accommodation, meals, incidentals, and fares)
    • evidence to substantiate the expenses (for example, a diary or receipts if yes, provide copies
    • a travel diary if the travel involved absence from your usual place of residence for more than six consecutive nights.

Using the Commissioner’s reasonable amounts

In some circumstances, (including where your total travel expenses claim is no more than the amount calculated using the Commissioner's reasonable amounts), you may not be required to produce written substantiation of your domestic travel expenses.

Note: If you are eligible to use the Commissioner's 'reasonable amount' exception to providing substantiation you may still be required to explain how you incurred the amount of each type of expense. For further information, see Taxation Ruling TR 2004/6 Income tax: substantiation exception for reasonable travel and overtime meal allowance expenses, paragraph 15.

The information we require for an objection about domestic travel deductions that involve the Commissioner's reasonable amounts can include:

  • how your travel related to your work as an employee
  • whether or not you actually incurred the food, accommodation and incidentals expenses you are claiming
  • whether or not you received a travel allowance, if yes we need to know
    • the amount of the allowance paid
    • if you included that allowance in your tax return
    • evidence that shows that you received a genuine travel allowance, such as
      • the payment summary or income statement showing you received a travel allowance
      • documents from your employer which explain what the allowance is intended to cover
      • a letter from your employer saying you were paid a bona fide travel allowance, and that it was not subject to fringe benefits tax (such as a living away from home allowance)
  • how you determined the amount you claimed, for example, outlining how much you spent on accommodation per day, how much you typically spent on each meal, and what usually made up the total expense for each of the main daily meals.

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