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Deductiibility of Self-Education Expenses

By Keelan Borlini|March 27th, 2019|Blog|
Self-Education Expenses
When it comes to work related education expenses that you are going to pay yourself, there are some essential conditions you must meet in order to claim them as a deduction against your Salary or Wage income.
 
Any courses you are thinking about enrolling in, need to have a strong link with your current work activities. For example, you can’t be employed as a bartender, and claim a deduction for a University Degree in Accounting. You would need to be employed at an accounting firm, with your occupation have a direct connection to your studies, in order to claim a deduction for the accounitng University fees.

Courses eligible to be claimed as a tax deduction

There are four conditions that need to be met in order to claim a deduction for course fees. These are as follows.

1. The education expenses must lead to a formal qualification being acquired, such as a university degree or TAFE certificate.
2. The course must have a strong connection to your current work activities.
3. The course must maintain or improve specific knowledge or skills that are required to continue in your current profession.
4. The course may/will result in an income increase from your current employment.
You cannot claim deductions for education expenses that may lead to you gaining employment in a completely unrelated profession.
 
Expenses you can claim
 
Accommodation
Computer Consumables
Course Fees
Depreciation Assets over $300
Equipment Repairs
Fares
Home Office Running Costs
Interest
Internet Usage
Phone Calls
Postage
Stationary
Student Union Fees
Student Services Fees
Textbooks
Professional Journals

Expenses you cannot claim
 
Repayments of Higher Education Loan Program (HELP) Loans
Repayments of Student Financial Supplement Scheme (SFSS)
Repayments of Student Start-up Loan (SSL)
Repayments of Trade Support Loan Program (TSL)
Home Office Occupancy Expenses
Meals (Unless sleeping away from home)

$250 Reduction

Self-education expenses are separated into 5 categories (A, B, C, D, E).
 
If all your expenses are solely Category A expenses, then you are required to reduce your deductions claim by $250. Expenses that fall in Category A are as follows.
1. Tuition fees.
2. Textbooks & stationary.
3. Student union fees & student services fees.
4. Transport expenses.
5. Home office running expenses.
 
Certain expenses, will not allowable deductions, can be used to offset the $250 reduction. Expenses such as the following are included in this.
 
1. Child care costs related to attending lectures.
2. Travel from place of education to your workplace, or travel from workplace to place of education.
3. Capital costs for items such as a computer or desk used for self-education.
 
It can be quite complicated and confusing when trying to determine what expenses you can and cannot claim when it comes to self-education expenses, and if you’re paying for the expenses out of your own pocket, we understand you want to claim the maximum amount of these expenses possible as tax deductions. Hopefully this article has assisted you in first determining whether you are eligible to claim self-education expenses, and if so, what expenses you can claim.
 
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