The tax season might seem like a drag, and it’s tempting to try to get it over with as quickly as possible by sending in your return without thinking about it too much. But do you realise you could be leaving money on the table that you’re legitimately entitled to keep?
Working with an experienced tax professional, like one of our consultants at H&R Block, to do your annual return is a super smart idea because they will help you get every possible deduction relevant to your job. So you can maximise your return and have more money in your pocket at the end of the day.
The key to success is to make sure you claim every legitimate deduction and this checklist is designed to assist you in ticking off possible work-related expenses and getting the best return.
Where to start? When you are completing an apprenticeship in any industry (such as carpentry, plumbing, commercial cookery, hairdressing, automotive body repair technology or roofing), you’ll get an income statement at the year end (we can download this for you from the ATO)or payment summary. This will outline all of your salary, wages, allowances and bonuses for the financial year, and this will form the basis of your annual return. The next step is working out your deductions.
Yes, you can! You can claim deductions on any money spent during the financial year on products or services that directly related to earning your income. You need to have spent the money yourself (it can’t have been reimbursed by your employer) and you need to keep a record of the expense such as a receipt or invoice.
There is a wide range of deductions you can claim as an apprentice, such as:
There are several key expenses you can’t claim, including:
This is a very important point! It might sound boring but record keeping is essential, and it’s a good idea to create an easy and reliable system to help you keep on top of this throughout the year. You don’t need to keep physical receipts, and it’s acceptable to keep a digital copy (such as a photo of a receipt or an email receipt) provided it is possible to read:
You also don’t need to keep receipts for expenses under $10 (as long as these don’t cumulatively come to more than $200).
You have to take lots of care in putting together the information and supporting documentation when filing your tax return, and only claim deductions that are genuine to avoid penalties and possibly even prosecution from the ATO. But we all make innocent mistakes sometimes and if you lodge yourself and realise you’ve submitted incorrect or unsubstantiated claims then you contact us immediately and we will assist you in making the necessary amendments.
Still have some questions about lodging your tax return? Talk to H&R Block. Our experienced tax consultants will be able to help. Call 13 23 25 for details or find your nearest office and book an appointment online.
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