Tax myths busted, part 2

Wangaratta Chronicle - North East Regional Extra - - NEWS -

Myth: I can claim my work clothes be­cause my boss told me to wear a cer­tain colour. Fact: Un­less your cloth­ing is a uniform that is unique and dis­tinct to your em­ployer, or pro­tec­tive or oc­cu­pa­tion-spe­cific cloth­ing that you were re­quired to wear to earn your in­come, you won’t be able to claim it. Plain clothes, like black pants, are not de­ductible even if your boss told you to wear them.

Myth: I can claim my whole Netflix or Fox­tel sub­scrip­tion be­cause I need to keep up to date for work.

Fact: Un­less you only use your sub­scrip­tions for work pur­poses, you will have to ap­por­tion the cost be­tween busi­ness and pri­vate us­age, and only claim the work-re­lated por­tion of your ex­penses. You will also need to be able to show a strong con­nec­tion be­tween earn­ing your in­come and the sub­scrip­tion.

Myth: I can claim home-towork travel be­cause I need to get to work to earn my in­come.

Fact: for most of us, home to work travel is pri­vate since your boss doesn’t pay you un­til you get to work. There are limited cir­cum­stances where some­one who has to trans­port bulky equip­ment can make a claim.

Myth: I’ve got a capped phone plan, so I can claim both per­sonal and pri­vate phone calls.

Fact: Un­less you only use your phone for work, you will have to ap­por­tion the cost be­tween busi­ness and pri­vate us­age and only claim the work-re­lated por­tion of your ex­penses.

Myth: If I use an agent, they will take re­spon­si­bil­ity for my claims.

Fact: Even if you use a tax agent, you are ul­ti­mately re­spon­si­ble for en­sur­ing the in­for­ma­tion in your re­turn, in­clud­ing the de­duc­tions you claim, is cor­rect.

For more tax in­for­ma­tion, see ato.gov.au.

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