Claiming tax deductions is an important personal admin task that can help you save hundreds of tax dollars. Most industries have a range of expenses that workers can claim and deduct from their annual taxable income. As part of the aged care or disability support industry, it’s likely that you will occasionally pay for work related purchases out of your own pocket. Keeping track of these purchases can help you get back some of the money from those expenses.
What you can claim are generally expenses that you incurred in order to make an income. So, what are some important tax deductions you can claim as a support worker?
If you provide in-home care, it’s likely that you will have to travel between your client’s homes. Therefore, one of the biggest tax deductions you can make is your travel expenses.
If you use your car to visit clients and attend meetings or conferences you can claim the costs of using your car. To do so, it’s best to keep a daily record of the amount of kilometres you travel for work purposes. Then, there’s a couple of ways you can calculate your deductions for car expenses.
In addition to fuel expenses, you can claim the cost of parking, tolls, taxis and public transport if you used these to get between two locations of work or to attend events like seminars if they’re not held at your usual place of work.
job-specific clothing can be claimed by care and support workers. Often protective clothing is necessary for care workers, so if you pay for such things, the costs are tax deductible. -slip nursing shoes can also be claimed.
Self-education and training costs
As an independent worker, it’s likely that you will need to complete a range of courses related to your job. This can involve basic qualifications, or courses that maintain a role or up-skill the worker.
Keep the receipts, invoices or any documents and proof of study for courses that you paid for. This is crucial for when you make the claim.
You can also claim the cost of any stationery, books, phone calls, internet connection, equipment and travel related to your training.
Another large tax deduction you can claim is the expense of work-related equipment and any repairs made on these pieces. This can range from things like medical equipment and tools to computers, laptops and software used for organisation. Again, you can claim things like stationery, log books and briefcases.
Other tax deductions you can claim
There’s a whole range of things you can consider claiming in relation to work. If you purchase or are subscribed to industry magazines or journals that are directly related to your work, you can claim the full amount as an aged care tax deduction.
You can also claim any charitable donations you have made, as well as the cost of managing your tax affairs, such as paying your accountant and travelling to and from your accountant’s offices.
Items to avoid
While there’s a lot of items you can claim, there are some things you should skip claiming too. Anything that you were reimbursed for, or your employer or client paid for will not be claimable. Similarly, if you receive payment for an expense, or the expense is covered in your PAYG statement, you should not claim it.
Additionally, if you don’t have any receipts or proof of the expense, there’s no point claiming such expenses as they won’t be accepted.
As you can see, making tax deductions can be a bit complicated but the savings you can make can make the process worth it. It’s wise to have a dedicated folder where you can keep all your receipts and documents so it’s organised and ready for tax time. Keeping track of your business expenses throughout the year can make a significant impact on your taxable income. For any items or issues you’re not sure about, it’s best to contact the ATO.
Claire Jones writes for Better Caring. In this role, she enjoys helping people find ways for themselves and their families to receive the care they need. Outside of work, Claire enjoys the beach and reading classic novels.