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myTax 2022 Work-related clothing, laundry and dry-cleaning expenses

How to complete the work-related clothing expenses section of your return using myTax.

Last updated 31 May 2022

Complete this section if you incurred work-related clothing expenses such as:

  • protective clothing
  • uniforms
  • occupation-specific clothing
  • laundering and dry-cleaning of this clothing.

Things to know

To claim a deduction for a work-related expense:

  • you must have spent the money yourself and weren't reimbursed
  • it must be directly related to earning your income
  • you must have a record to prove it (usually a receipt).

If your total claim for work-related expenses is more than $300, you must have written evidence to prove your claims.

You can claim

You can claim the cost of a work uniform that is distinctive (such as one that has your employer’s logo permanently attached) and must be:

  • a non-compulsory uniform your employer has registered with AusIndustry (check with your employer if you are not sure)
  • a compulsory uniform that is either a set of clothing or a single item identifying you as an employee of an organisation
    • there must be a policy enforcing its use
    • this may include shoes, stockings, socks and jumpers if they are an essential part of a distinctive, compulsory uniform and the colour, style and type are specified in your employer's policy.

You can also claim the cost of:

  • clothing that is specific to your occupation, is not everyday in nature and allows the public to easily recognise your occupation – such as the checked pants a chef wears
  • protective clothing and footwear that protects you from the risk of illness or injury or prevents damage to your ordinary clothes caused by your work or work environment. Items may include
    • fire-resistant clothing
    • sun protection clothing
    • safety-coloured vests
    • non-slip nurse’s shoes
    • steel-capped boots
    • gloves
    • overalls
    • aprons
    • heavy duty shirts and trousers.

You can also claim the cost of renting, repairing and cleaning any of the above work-related clothing.

Claim at this section any work-related clothing expenses incurred in earning assessable foreign employment income shown on an income statement or PAYG payment summary – foreign employment.

If you no longer own or use an item costing over $300 (such as chemical protective clothing or biological hazard clothing) and you previously claimed a deduction for its decline in value, you may need to make a balancing adjustment.

Related page

Claiming deductions
You may be able to claim deductions for work-related expenses you incurred while performing your job as an employee.

You can't claim

You can't claim a deduction for the cost of purchasing or cleaning clothes you bought to wear for work that are not specific to your occupation, such as black trousers and a white shirt, or a suit, even if your employer says this is compulsory.

These items are conventional, not usually a specific type and not sufficiently distinctive or unique to your employer.

Do not show at this section

Don't show the following at this section:

Any balancing adjustment amounts calculated in the Depreciation and capital allowance tool will show automatically.

Completing this section

You will need:

  • receipts, invoices or other written evidence
  • diary records of your laundry costs if
    • the amount of your laundry expenses claim is greater than $150, and
    • your total claim for work-related expenses exceeds $300 – the $300 does not include car and meal allowance, award transport payments allowance and travel allowance expenses.

If you did washing, drying or ironing yourself, you can use a reasonable basis to calculate the amount, such as $1 per load for work-related clothing or 50 cents per load if other laundry items were included.

We pre-fill your tax return with work-related clothing, laundry and dry-cleaning expense information you uploaded from myDeductions. Check them and add any work-related clothing, laundry and dry-cleaning expenses that have not pre-filled.

To claim work-related clothing, laundry and dry-cleaning expenses, you must first show income from salary and wages or foreign employment income in the Income statements and payment summaries section.

To personalise your return to show work-related clothing, laundry and dry-cleaning expenses, at Personalise return select:

  • You had deductions you want to claim
  • Work-related expenses

To claim your work-related clothing, laundry and dry-cleaning expenses, at Prepare return select 'Add/Edit' at the Deductions banner.

At the Work-related clothing, laundry and dry-cleaning expenses banner:

  1. For each work-related clothing, laundry and dry-cleaning expense not pre-filled in your tax return, select Add.
  2. Select the Clothing type and enter the amount.
    The Depreciation and capital allowances tool can help you to work our any decline in value deduction. It can also work out any deductible balancing adjustment when you stop holding a depreciating asset. Access this tool in the Deductions section.
    Fields from this tool can't be adjusted in myTax. To make any adjustments, or to add new assets to the tool, select the 'Use the depreciation and capital allowances tool' link.
  3. Select Save.
  4. Select Save and continue when you have completed the Deductions section.

You need to keep records for five years (in most cases) from the date you lodge your tax return.

Our myDeductions tool is free to use and is available through the ATO app. The tool makes it easier and more convenient to keep records of your expenses and income in one place, including photos of your receipts and invoices.