It’s almost tax time and if you’re anything like us, you’re already daydreaming about what you’re going to spend your refund on.
But while it may be tempting to claim everything you possibly can to increase that refund, it pays to not be cavalier with your tax records.
The Australian Taxation Office has released a list targeting the common misconceptions around what you can and can’t claim.
“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,” says assistant commissioner Kath Anderson.
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A common mistake? Writing off expenses you didn’t actually purchase.
“Some taxpayers even think that you can make a standard claim of $300 without having spent the money,” Anderson explains.
“You don’t need receipts for claims up to $300 but you must have actually spent the money, and be able to show us how you worked out your deduction if asked.”
Here are 11 things the ATO says you “probably can’t claim” on your tax return:
1. Trips between home and work.
Whether it be by bus, train, car or ferry, you can’t claim the cost of getting to work – it’s considered private travel.
2. Car expenses that have been salary sacrificed.
Salary sacrificed expenses are already tax-free, so ensure you don’t double up.