2020 changed so many things, and these include the way we work, spend, and live. These modifications to the modern lifestyle raise several questions about whether these will change the way people pay their taxes, mainly where deductions are concerned.

A Few Key Points

Before you lodge your tax return and claim certain deductions, take note of the following:

  • Possible deductions include any expenses incurred within the 2019-2020 financial year;
  • To claim deductions on work-related expenses:
    • You spent your own money but failed to receive any reimbursements from your company;
    • Costs incurred are directly related to earning your income; and
    • You kept a record of any relevant payments made;

Note that all expenses claimed as deductions must not be domestic, private, or capital in nature. For example, the cost of one’s daily commute or meals during the workday is not a claimable deduction since it is considered a personal expense. 


Items That Can Be Claimed as Deductions

  • Vehicle expenses used for work purposes including fuel, repairs, and maintenance; 
  • Expenses related to official travel, such as transportation and accommodation;
  • Clothing expenses if these are directly related to one’s work or if the company requires you to purchase a uniform or have one made;
  • Education and training expenses;
  • Union fees;
  • Desktop or laptop computer, internet, and phone expenses if one purchases these to set up a workspace at home;
  • Tools and equipment expenses; and
  • Relevant journals and trade magazines.

For Australians employed overseas or have presented payment for foreign employment on one’s income statement, you may claim deductions that you are entitled to based on the relevant items from the abovementioned list. 

Possible Non-work-related Deductions

Likewise, you may also may be able to claim the following:

  • The cost incurred in order to derive interest and any dividends from personal investments;
  • Gifts or donations made to known  registered charities or public donation drives for specific causes or calamities; and
  • Any costs incurred during the management or processing of one’s tax affairs.

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