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Self-education expenses | sufficient connection

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Newbie

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Hi, 

I am a public servant, whose full-time job is to manage the content of a government website. I am currently studying a graduate certificate in ICT. Is there a sufficent connection to my current work so I can claim this as a self-education expense? 

 

I think studying ICT will help me understand how websites work. The unit I studied in the previous semester was programming and that definitely improved my knowledge, which I was able to use when working with JavaScript. 

 

I think the study will potentially help me get a promotion in the future. 

 

Kind regards, 

 

Michael

 

 

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ATO Certified

Devotee

Replies 3

Hi @michael1,

 

Thanks for posting! Tax deductions for self-education expenses related to your work as an employee are usually only available if you work and study at the same time and can satisfy any of these conditions:

  • you are upgrading your qualifications for your current employment – for example, upgrading from a Bachelor qualification to a Masters qualification
  • you are improving specific skills or knowledge used in your current employment – for example, a course that will allow you to operate more machinery at work
  • you are employed as a trainee and you are undertaking a course that forms part of that traineeship – for example, an overseas trained person employed as an intern while doing a bridging course
  • you can show that at the time you were working and studying, your course led, or was likely to lead, to an increase in employment income – for example, a teacher who will automatically get a pay increase as a result of completing the course.

You cannot claim a deduction for self-education expenses for a course that does not have a sufficient connection to your current work activities even though it:

  • might be generally related to it, or
  • enables you to get new employment.

We can help you find useful links and info here on Community, but we can't provide financial advice. If you're looking for written advice on how we think tax law applies to you, you can contact our early engagement team to request a call back or follow up email.

 

Thanks!

4 REPLIES 4

Best answer

ATO Certified

Devotee

Replies 3

Hi @michael1,

 

Thanks for posting! Tax deductions for self-education expenses related to your work as an employee are usually only available if you work and study at the same time and can satisfy any of these conditions:

  • you are upgrading your qualifications for your current employment – for example, upgrading from a Bachelor qualification to a Masters qualification
  • you are improving specific skills or knowledge used in your current employment – for example, a course that will allow you to operate more machinery at work
  • you are employed as a trainee and you are undertaking a course that forms part of that traineeship – for example, an overseas trained person employed as an intern while doing a bridging course
  • you can show that at the time you were working and studying, your course led, or was likely to lead, to an increase in employment income – for example, a teacher who will automatically get a pay increase as a result of completing the course.

You cannot claim a deduction for self-education expenses for a course that does not have a sufficient connection to your current work activities even though it:

  • might be generally related to it, or
  • enables you to get new employment.

We can help you find useful links and info here on Community, but we can't provide financial advice. If you're looking for written advice on how we think tax law applies to you, you can contact our early engagement team to request a call back or follow up email.

 

Thanks!

Newbie

Replies 2

Thanks Amanda. 

 

I believe the 2nd dot point about improving specific skills is potentially relevant to me. 

 

I have contacted the early engagement team and will probably submit a private ruling application. 

 

I am having problems downloading the private ruling application form though. Smiley Sad 

 

It says Please wait... when I try to open the PDF. I have tried right-clicking and selecting 'save target as'. 

 

Kind regards, 

Devotee

Replies 1

Hi @michael1,

 

Sorry to hear you're having difficulties accessing the form! You can access the private ruling application form through our online ordering service at https://iorder.com.au/ - you can either download a copy of the form or email a copy to your preferred email address.

 

You can also send us a letter explaining your situation and requesting a private ruling - you can find the instructions for sending us a letter at https://www.ato.gov.au/forms/private-ruling-application-form/.

Thanks!

Newbie

Replies 0

Thanks Amanda, 

 

So I have to send a private ruling application by mail because email is not available? 

 

Is this form meant to be a smart form? Some of the questions, e.g. 3.1, say they will "expand to accomodate the information you enter", but the form I downloaded from https://iorder.com.au/ doesn't appear to be a smart PDF form. 

 

Michael

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