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ATO warns about work-related expense claims

The ATO is warning taxpayers to avoid incorrect claims for work-related expenses at tax time this year. ATO Assistant Commissioner Kath Anderson said the ATO is using real-time data to compare taxpayers with others in similar occupations and income brackets, to identify higher-than-expected claims related to expenses including vehicle, travel, internet and mobile phone, and self-education. The Assistant Commissioner said many taxpayers don’t have a good understanding of what deductions they can claim, and believe they can claim for items which they in fact can’t. She said some taxpayers think they can make a standard claim of $300 without having spent the money. She reminded taxpayers that while receipts are not needed for claims up to $300, taxpayers must have actually spent the money, and be able to show the ATO how they worked out their deduction if asked. Ms Anderson also noted that deductions for work uniforms are a common trap for employees at tax time.

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