If you’re a teacher, it really pays off to know what you can and can’t claim within your next tax return. Find out more of our top tax tips for teachers below!
Home office expenses
We all know someone whether it be a family member or friend who’s a teacher. Teaching comes with a lot of after-hour work. From correcting students work, to lesson planning and what feels like a never-ending report writing season.
But did you know the hours spent at home for work-related duties can be tax deductible?
Teachers can claim a deduction of 52 cents for home running expenses for every hour of work undertaken from home for the 2019 financial year. This deduction covers an overall cost for electricity & gas, as well as general depreciation of furniture and equipment used from home for work purposes.
Expenses for such things like camps, excursions and school trips are commonplace for teachers. So its super important you keep track of all your spending(not reimbursed by your employer). This includes meals, transport, and accommodation should you be required to stay overnight so you capture all your eligible tax deductions. If you are required to use your private motor vehicle, take note of the number of kilometres driven.
You can claim a deduction for the costs incurred buying, hiring, fixing or cleaning certain uniforms that are unique and distinctive to your job, as well as protective clothing that your employer requires you to wear such as a sun protective hat & sunscreen or work boots.
You may claim a deduction for expenses in relation to self-education provided by a school/college/university or professional training body. As outlined by the ATO, you can only claim a deduction if “There is a direct connection between the course you studied and your employment at the time.” You must also satisfy one of the following four conditions:
- Upgrading your qualifications for your current role.
- Improving your skills or knowledge used in your current role.
- A trainee and the course you take forms part of the traineeship.
- Able to show the course you were taking led to or was likely to lead to, an increase in your current salary.
Other Work-related Deductions
- Supplies and stationery purchased for the classroom and other ad hoc work duties
- Phone and internet usage, note that only the work-related percentage is tax-deductible
- Professional subscriptions such as Microsoft & Newspapers
- Union and professional membership fees
Please remember the 4 key points to be eligible for any tax deduction:
- You must have spent the money yourself and were not reimbursed by your employer.
- It must be directly related to earning your income.
- You must have records &/or receipts to substantiate your claims.
- You can only claim the work-related portion of your expenses.
If you need more tax tips for teachers we are happy to help. We have a team of tax agents ready to answer any tax query you may have. So get in touch and one of our friendly tax agents will be able to assist.