Some new deduction policies have been added by the ATO this year – specifically for Beauty Therapists.
As end of financial year approaches, the ATO has announced some exciting news – they’ve released a range of resources to assist Beauty Therapists with their tax returns for 19/20, as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic having such drastic changes on those working in the industry. “It is now more important than ever that everyone understands how to best prepare and lodge their tax returns, to ensure they claim their applicable deductions,” says the ATO, who shared the following news and information with SPA+CLINIC directly.
Assistant Commissioner Karen Foat says “This tax time the ATO expects to see a substantial increase in people claiming deductions for working from home or for protective items required for work.”
Here’s what you can claim this year:
Working from home expenses
The ATO has introduced a simplified method for claiming deductions for anyone working from home as a result of COVID-19. Between 1 March and 30 June 2020, taxpayers will be able to claim 80 cents per work hour for all their additional running expenses, rather than needing to calculate costs for specific running expenses. This new method is designed to make tax returns simpler for anybody who has recently transitioned to working from home due to COVID-19, and ensures they are able to easily claim their relevant deductions.
Another deduction some people might be claiming due to COVID-19 is expenses for protective items required for work.“Taxpayers working in jobs that require physical contact or close proximity with customers or clients during COVID-19 measures may be able to claim a deduction for items such as gloves, face masks, sanitiser or anti-bacterial spray if they have paid for the items and not been reimbursed. This includes industries like healthcare, retail and hospitality” Ms Foat said.
You can continue to claim the following items as you would have done in previous years:
Travel expenses if you are required to travel away from your home overnight in the course of performing your employment duties – for example, to attend a conference, seminar, training course or industry promotion. This could include meals, accommodation, fares and incidental expenses that you incur. You can’t claim a deduction if the travel is paid for, or you are reimbursed by your employer or another person. Receiving a travel allowance from your employer doesn’t mean you can automatically claim a deduction. You still need to show that you were away overnight, you spent the money yourself, and the travel was directly related to earning your employment income.
Buying, hiring, mending or cleaning certain uniforms that are unique and distinctive to your job. You can’t claim a deduction for the cost of buying or cleaning plain clothing (e.g. black pants) worn at work, even if you only wear it to work and even if your employer tells you to wear it.
As long as the expense relates to your employment, you can claim a deduction for the work-related portion.
■ mobile phone calls
■ union and professional association fees
■ technical or professional publications
Using your car when you drive:
■ between separate jobs on the same day – for example, from your aesthetic job to a second job with another employer
■ to and from an alternate workplace for the same employer on the same day, such as a different salon.
You generally can’t claim the cost of normal trips between home and work, even if you have to work outside normal hours (eg late night shopping or on the weekend). This includes parking fees and tolls when you drive to and from work.
Self-education expenses if your course relates directly to your current job. You can’t claim a deduction if your study is only related in a general way or is designed to help you get a new job.
Tools and equipment that you use for work. If you use the tools and equipment for work-related purposes as well as private purposes – for example, treat your family with your equipment at home, you can only claim a deduction for your work-related use of the tools and equipment. If a tool or item of work equipment cost:
■ more than $300 – you can claim a deduction for the cost over a number of years (decline in value)
■ $300 or less – you can claim an immediate deduction for the whole cost
More information can be found by contacting the ATO directly or via their website – ato.gov.au
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