Technicians and trades workers
If you’re employed as a hairdresser or beauty therapist it pays to learn what you can claim.
To claim a deduction for work-related expenses:
- you must have spent the money yourself and weren’t reimbursed
- it must be directly related to earning your income
- you must have a record to prove it.
You can use the myDeductions tool in the ATO app to keep track of your expenses and receipts throughout the year.
You can only claim the work-related part of expenses. You can’t claim a deduction for any part of the expense that relates to personal use.
You can claim a deduction for 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.
You can claim a deduction for the cost of using your car when you drive:
- between separate jobs on the same day – for example, from your hairdresser 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 (for example, late night shopping or on the weekend). This includes parking fees and tolls when you drive to and from work.
Clothing and laundry expenses
You can claim a deduction for the cost of buying, hiring, mending or cleaning certain uniforms that are unique and distinctive to your job. You can also claim a deduction for protective clothing that your employer wants you to wear – for example, face masks and gloves.
You can’t claim a deduction if your employer buys, mends or cleans your clothing. You also can’t claim a deduction for the cost of buying or cleaning plain clothing (for example, black pants) worn at work, even if you only wear it to work and even if your employer tells you to wear it.
Tools and equipment
You can claim a deduction for the cost of tools and equipment that you use for work, such as hair cutting and hair styling tools. If you use the tools and equipment for work-related purposes as well as private purposes – for example, you cut your family’s hair with your scissors 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.
You can’t claim a deduction if the tools and equipment are supplied by your employer or another person.
You can claim a deduction for the cost of repairing your tools and equipment you use for work. If the tools or equipment were also used for private purposes, you can’t claim a deduction for that part of the repair cost that relates to your private use of the tools and equipment.
You can claim a deduction for self-education expenses if your course relates directly to your current job, such as advanced colouring, cutting and up-style courses.
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. For example, if you’re a hairdresser you can’t claim the cost of study to enable you to become a make-up artist.
Personal grooming and beauty products
You can’t claim a deduction for hairdressing, cosmetics, hair and skincare products and other beauty products, even if your employer tells you to use them – they are personal expenses.
As long as the expense relates to your employment, you can claim a deduction for the work-related portion of the cost of:
- mobile phone calls
- union and professional association fees
- technical or professional publications.
You can’t claim a deduction if the cost was met or reimbursed by your employer.
Access Carrick Aland’s tax checklists and factsheets here or call our team in Dalby, Toowoomba or Chinchilla on 07 4669 9800.