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Tax deductions for teachers

Mark Chapman, Tax Communications Director, H&R Block

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The beginning of the school year is the perfect time for teachers and those working in education to align their finances so they’re ready come tax time.

The key thing as the new school year starts, is to get into the habit of recording all your work-related expenses and keeping copies of all the documentation you’ll need come tax time (like invoices, receipts, bank and credit card statements).

Even if you’re not sure if its claimable, keep the paperwork and you can discuss it with you tax agent at tax time. Better still, if you need guidance on what you can and cant claim, have a chat with your tax agent now so you understand the parameters of what is and isn’t claimable.

Not all teachers can claim the same deductions – supply teachers might have access to additional deductions for travel claims between schools, for instance – so it’s worth getting tailored advice specific to your situation.

Teacher specific deductions

Our philosophy is centred around tailoring tax to the subtleties of your occupation. We set our parameters around the particulars of your profession and that’s what sets us apart.

As specialists in occupation specific returns, discovering all the deductions teachers can claim is what we love and why we guarantee the best outcome. Here are some of the smart deductions teachers can claim:

  • Annual teacher registration
  • References books or a professional library
  • Stationary, art materials, stopwatches and computer consumables including pens and toner cartridges
  • Depreciation on technology costing more than $300, like computers, laptops, tablets, mobile phones and printers (items less than $300 may be written off immediately)
  • Teacher aids
  • Conferences and courses linked to your teaching
  • Home study expenses including electricity, internet and phone
  • Expenses relating to sports trips and school camps
  • Work-related travel (not including the commute to and from work)
  • Clothing (such as uniforms) and laundry

After all is said and deducted, we specialise in making tax simple. With over 40 years as Australia’s leading taxation experts, we’re fascinated by numbers – and great results.

The education advantage

Our advice is the same whether you’re a first-year teacher, or have been in the job for a while. It’s important to employ detailed knowledge of the tax system so you know what you can and can’t claim at tax time.

What’s not widely understood is exactly what you can claim as work-related expenses. It’s important to do the groundwork before tax time and keep a record of your outgoings. As a general rule, if you’re not reimbursed for out-of-pocket expenses related to work, you can claim it.

Retain your receipts and invoices, bank and credit card statements so you can go through them with our tax experts. To take your tax to the next level, keep a journal of the number of kilometres you travelled for work this year, when and where you went and why it’s work-related.

To make sure you’re making the most of tax and getting the right returns, call 132335 and lock in an appointment at your local H&R Block office today. 

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