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Hi, I have a question about claiming car/travel expenses. I live 89km away from my office and I travel to several locations as part of my work - I am contracted to other businesses. I don't travel to my office much, maybe I'm there for 8-10 weeks in a year. I drive directly from home to these other sites as they are in the opposite direction from the office otherwise I'd be making redundant trips. I use my own car and pay for all expenses. I use a logbook and I use my car for 72% of business-related travel. I've travelled close to 10,000km and spent about $4500 on fuel and $3000 on servicing this past financial year. Is it reasonable to claim 72% of these costs?

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Best answer

Devotee

Replies 0

Hi @ZCrook

 

Thanks for your post! We'd need some extra information about your specific situation to be able to give you a yes/no answer, but we can help you find information so you can work it out. 

Generally speaking, if you're an employee you can't claim costs associated with travelling from home to work - these are considered to be private costs. If, however, you're considered to be performing itinerant work, you may be able to claim car expenses. 

 

To be considered to be an itinerant worker, you'd need to be able to demonstrate: 

  • Travel is a fundamental part of your work, as the very nature of your work, not just because it is convenient to you or your employer.
  • You have a 'web' of work places you travel to, throughout the day.
  • You continually travel from one work site to another.
  • Your home is a base of operations – if you start work at home and cannot complete it until you attend at your work site.
  • You are often uncertain of the location of your work site.
  • Your employer provides an allowance in recognition of your need to travel continually between different work sites and you use this allowance to pay for your travel.

As @macfanboy pointed out, if the other workplaces you visit are 'regular' workplaces, you may not meet the criteria for itinerant work and no deduction would be allowed. 

 

Our guide on car expenses contains information on when car expenses are allowable deductions. If you believe the information on our website doesn't apply to your situation, though, you can ask us for a private ruling. Private rulings are free written advice from us on how we think tax law applies to your circumstances, and we generally reply with 28 days of receiving your request. 

Thanks!

2 REPLIES 2

Taxicorn

Replies 0

These other sites would now become your usual place of work and therefore you would not be able to claim anything for them.

 

If you are talking about visiting numerous sites daily/weekly with no pattern then you should be able to claim for them.

 

Best answer

Devotee

Replies 0

Hi @ZCrook

 

Thanks for your post! We'd need some extra information about your specific situation to be able to give you a yes/no answer, but we can help you find information so you can work it out. 

Generally speaking, if you're an employee you can't claim costs associated with travelling from home to work - these are considered to be private costs. If, however, you're considered to be performing itinerant work, you may be able to claim car expenses. 

 

To be considered to be an itinerant worker, you'd need to be able to demonstrate: 

  • Travel is a fundamental part of your work, as the very nature of your work, not just because it is convenient to you or your employer.
  • You have a 'web' of work places you travel to, throughout the day.
  • You continually travel from one work site to another.
  • Your home is a base of operations – if you start work at home and cannot complete it until you attend at your work site.
  • You are often uncertain of the location of your work site.
  • Your employer provides an allowance in recognition of your need to travel continually between different work sites and you use this allowance to pay for your travel.

As @macfanboy pointed out, if the other workplaces you visit are 'regular' workplaces, you may not meet the criteria for itinerant work and no deduction would be allowed. 

 

Our guide on car expenses contains information on when car expenses are allowable deductions. If you believe the information on our website doesn't apply to your situation, though, you can ask us for a private ruling. Private rulings are free written advice from us on how we think tax law applies to your circumstances, and we generally reply with 28 days of receiving your request. 

Thanks!

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