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ATO rejects lawyer's work-related self-education claim

ATO rejects lawyer's work-related self-education claim

The Australian Tax Office has rejected a lawyer's claim for $18,421 in tax deductions.

The Australian Tax Office has rejected a lawyer’s claim for $18,421 in tax deductions. 

The 33-year-old-lawyer had been studying an MBA in America and sought to claim $17,540 for accommodation and meals and $881 for phone calls, as work-related self-education expenses. 

The ATO had previously allowed him to claim $49, 749 worth of expenses in 2006, but the latest round of claims were rejected by the office on the basis they were “private or domestic in nature”. 

The Administrative Appeals Tribunal upheld the ATO decision, ruling that that the lawyer had set up a new home in the US and rejected his argument that he maintained a room in his parents place in Victoria. 

More than 510,000 taxpayers claimed $866 million in self education expenses in 2006-07 ATO statistics show. To legitimately claim the expenses tax payers must show a direct link between their education expenses and their income. 

The government’s Henry Taxation Review is considering making it easier to deduct self-education expenses and rejigging personal income tax rates to encourage young people to invest in their skills and careers. 


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