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  • Cost of managing tax affairs

    You can claim a deduction for expenses you incur in managing your own tax affairs, such as the cost to lodge through a registered agent. Costs you can claim a deduction for include:

    • those associated with preparing and lodging your tax return and activity statements, such as
      • buying tax reference material
      • tax return preparation courses
      • lodging your tax return through a registered tax agent
      • obtaining tax advice from a recognised tax adviser (a registered tax agent, barrister or solicitor)
      • dealing with us about your tax affairs
      • buying software that allows you to prepare and lodge your tax return.
        You can only claim a portion of the cost if you also use the software for other purposes.
    • travel costs you incur to obtain tax advice – for example, the travel costs of attending a meeting with a recognised tax adviser
    • litigation costs including court and Administrative Appeals Tribunal fees, solicitor, barrister and other legal costs
    • obtaining a valuation for a deductible gift or donation of property, or for a deduction for entering into a conservation covenant
    • an interest charge we impose – see Interest charged by the ATO.
    • some fees you incur when you pay your tax obligations by card, such as
      • credit and debit card fees for a business tax liability (for example, GST)
      • debit card fees when paying an individual tax liability.

    If you receive a single invoice for preparing your tax returns or the tax returns for associated persons (such as a spouse), you need to split the fees you incur. You must also:

    • be able to show how you work out the cost for each
    • keep evidence to support the deduction you claim.

    You generally incur the fees in the year you pay them.

    See also:

    Last modified: 07 Jun 2021QC 31959