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Claiming Travel to See your Tax Agent as a Tax Deduction.

October 20th, 2013

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 Claiming Travel to see your Tax Agent as a Tax Deduction 

If you travel to see a registered tax agent then you can claim it as a tax deduction.

People travel to see their tax agent for a number of different reasons:

–          To sign forms

–          To pick up cheques

–          To get tax advice

–          To pay bills

–          To get their tax return lodged

–          To drop of information

Travel to your tax agent can be done in a variety of ways:

–          By bus

–          By taxi

–          By plane if you live in a different town or state

–          By car

–          By train

If you live in a different town or state to your tax agent and you are required to stay overnight to visit your tax agent, then your accommodation and meals may also be tax deductible.  Just remember that if there is any private element to the trip, then it needs to be taken into account.

“I normally drive my own car to see my accountant. How do I make the claim in my tax return?”

The most common way to claim travel in your car to see your tax agent is via the Cents Per Kilometre Method.  Under this method you add up the total number of kilometres travelled to see your tax agent and multiply it by the Cents Per Kilometre rate/100.  

You can find out more about the Cents Per Kilometre Method of claiming your car here.

For Example: Jo Blog lives 20 km from his tax agent.  He works as a bar attendant at the local hotel down the road.  He owns his own car and the only thing he ever claims in his tax return is laundry.  Jo has traveled in his own car to see his tax agent three times this year.  Once to get his tax return done, one week later he returned with missing information that his accountant required to lodge his tax return, and three weeks later he returned to pick up his tax cheque. The trips can be claimed in the tax year they were undertaken, regardless of what years tax return they related to.

The three trips totaled 120km for the year.  The cents per kilometre rate for a 6 cylinder car is 75c.   Jo will claim 120km x 75c /100 = $90 as a tax deduction.

For an average person paying tax at 34c in the dollar this would amount to an extra $30 in their tax refund at the end of the year.

Note that under this method of car claim, you will not need to keep receipts for your fuel and car expenses.  You will, however, need to keep a list of the trips that you made to see your tax agent with details of:

  • The purpose of the trip
  • The date of the trip
  • The number of kilometres traveled for each trip

Warning:  if you are using this method to claim travel to see your tax agent, you need to be aware that the Cents Per Kilometre method of car claim is capped at 5000km across your entire tax return.  Therefore, if you’re already claiming car travel elsewhere in your tax return, you need to be careful you don’t over claim.

Travel to see your tax agent is claimed at item D10 on your tax return.  You can find out more about item D10 here.

If travel to see your tax agent involved another form of transport such as bus or airfares, you will need to keep receipts.  I also strongly suggest that before you go making any claim, you speak with the Australian Taxation Office or a registered tax agent to discuss your individual circumstances.  

 

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