Tax Time 2018: The Things You Can Claim Without Receipts

Tax Return

Tax time 2018 is just around the corner and for many Australians, this is the time for the mad scramble for old receipts and records that will help you get your deserved tax refunds.

The Australian Taxation Office mantra when it comes to tax refunds is often no record no refund and there is no better way to satisfy the ATO than to produce receipts detailing the expenses that you are claiming. However, in spite of our most meticulous efforts, there are simply some transactions where receipts may be impossible to get. The ATO understands this and that is why they offer taxpayers certain substantiation exemptions when it comes to proving your expenses. These are a host of tax deductions that you can claim without providing receipts.

However, the onus will be on you to prove how you arrived at those claims and calculated your deductions. If you are facing some difficulty in this area, you can talk to an accountant Melbourne professional to help you work out the tax deductions for the expenses with substantiation exemptions. Mostly, you will need to show this through some form of secondary evidence even if you don’t have the receipts. This evidence can be in the form of bank statements or some credible written statements validating your claims.

Here is an overview of some of the deductions that you can claim this year without providing receipts:-

Work-Related Deductions

You can claim up to $300 worth of work-related expenses without providing receipts proving the expenses. However, you cannot pull this figure out of thin air. You must have a way of proving that the amount was actually spent on the stated purpose. While you don’t have to outline every single expense that you incurred for work-related expenses, you must come up with a reasonable calculation to justify the deduction.

Home Office Expenses

Aussies work some of the longest hours in the developed world and that often means a portion of the work is carried home. Some work from a dedicated home office kitted out with the office equipment to ensure a comfortable working area. With the growth of the gig economy in the recent years, a growing number of Aussies have also converted portions of their homes into permanent workplaces. You are likely to incur some costs when working from your home office such as internet costs, electricity bills, cost of equipping the home office and other home office related expenses.

When it comes to home office deductions, you can go about it two ways. One is to keep detailed records of all the actual costs incurred while operating from your home office. Alternatively, you can claim the Australian Taxation Office fixed rate of 45 cents per hour when working from home.

There are various other expenses that you can claim without receipts this tax time. These include the following:-

  • Any membership or union fees that can be itemized in a PAYG summary.
  • Stationery items as long as you have a credit card statement and along with a note in your purchase record to validate the purchases.
  • Computer items as long as you have a credit card statement that shows the purchase. You can also attach a photo of the packaging as further evidence.
  • Fuel and petrol usage: You can include this as long as you are able to show the distances covered on your work-related travel.

In the absence of receipts, the Australian Taxation Office can also accept bank statements as well as BPay statements so you can use these as records of your purchase when filing tax deduction claims.

The catch is that these deductions made without any receipts are often going to be at the discretion of the Australian Taxation Office. Where possible, it is always advisable to keep receipts that provide a solid record of your expenses.

Finally, ensure that all the expenses claimed are allowable. It has to be an expense that you are allowed to claim based on your occupation and which you haven’t been reimbursed for by your employer. Need assistance in navigating your tax deductions? An accountant Melbourne professional can assist you with filing your claims.

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