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Re: Protective Shoes

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Devotee

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@RachaelB, @AmandaE or anybody else.

 

Trying find any ruling to allow a claim for protective footwear for a client that walks 15-20km every day.

 

Without spending money on good quality walking shoes they develop painful calluses and blisters which prevent them from working.

 

Is the only solution a Private ruling?

 

 

 

 

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ATO Certified

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Hi @macfanboy,

 

Thanks for your question!

 

You might want to have a look at TR 2003/16, which explains our position on deductions for protective clothing. If the shoes purchased by the taxpayer are specifically designed for protective purposes, this will make things a lot easier.

 

If they are just conventional shoes, this may muddy the waters a little bit, but it doesn't necessarily exclude them. See below:

 

10. Although a protective item may be of a kind normally associated with private or domestic use, the nature of your use of that item will in some instances give your expenditure on it the essential character of an outgoing incurred in gaining assessable income. This is a question of fact and depends on the degree to which your work place poses a risk of illness or injury and the degree to which the item protects you against that risk.

 

And:

11. The following are indicators of the degree of risk and of protection against that risk referred to in paragraph 10:

  • You are required to work in an environment which could be harmful if adequate safety precautions are not taken; For example - do you work in extreme weather conditions?
  • The use of the item in the work place makes it unsuitable for private or personal use; For example - does your protective work clothing become so soiled in protecting you at work that it is unsuitable to wear to and from work?
  • Expenditure on the item is additional to your normal private or domestic expenditure on such items; For example - do you need to wear additional protective clothing at work to guard against risk or injury from extreme weather or other potentially unsafe conditions?
  • The item is qualitatively different to items of a comparable nature used privately or domestically; For example - is the item made to cope with more rigorous work conditions?
  • You use the item principally for income producing activities; For example - do you use the item only at work or, if there is some private or domestic use, is this use only incidental to its main use at work?
  • It is a requirement of your employer, work-related safety laws or an industrial agreement for you to use protective items; For example - does your industrial award provide for payment of an allowance for you to purchase protective items for use at work?
  • The use of the item adds to your workplace productivity; and For example - does your use of the protective item enable you to work for more sustained periods?
  • Any other feature of your use of the item for protective purposes which may further indicate your expenditure on that item has the essential character of an outgoing incurred in gaining your assessable income.

 

I'd expect that if your client could demonstrate meeting two or more of these characteristics, then the shoes may very well be deductible.

 

Otherwise, you're welcome to seek a private ruling but I'd imagine that the result would be based heavily on the information contained within this ruling.

 

I hope this helps, but please let me know if you have any other questions!

 

Thanks,

 

Rachael B.

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ATO Certified

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Replies 2

Hi @macfanboy,

 

Thanks for your question!

 

You might want to have a look at TR 2003/16, which explains our position on deductions for protective clothing. If the shoes purchased by the taxpayer are specifically designed for protective purposes, this will make things a lot easier.

 

If they are just conventional shoes, this may muddy the waters a little bit, but it doesn't necessarily exclude them. See below:

 

10. Although a protective item may be of a kind normally associated with private or domestic use, the nature of your use of that item will in some instances give your expenditure on it the essential character of an outgoing incurred in gaining assessable income. This is a question of fact and depends on the degree to which your work place poses a risk of illness or injury and the degree to which the item protects you against that risk.

 

And:

11. The following are indicators of the degree of risk and of protection against that risk referred to in paragraph 10:

  • You are required to work in an environment which could be harmful if adequate safety precautions are not taken; For example - do you work in extreme weather conditions?
  • The use of the item in the work place makes it unsuitable for private or personal use; For example - does your protective work clothing become so soiled in protecting you at work that it is unsuitable to wear to and from work?
  • Expenditure on the item is additional to your normal private or domestic expenditure on such items; For example - do you need to wear additional protective clothing at work to guard against risk or injury from extreme weather or other potentially unsafe conditions?
  • The item is qualitatively different to items of a comparable nature used privately or domestically; For example - is the item made to cope with more rigorous work conditions?
  • You use the item principally for income producing activities; For example - do you use the item only at work or, if there is some private or domestic use, is this use only incidental to its main use at work?
  • It is a requirement of your employer, work-related safety laws or an industrial agreement for you to use protective items; For example - does your industrial award provide for payment of an allowance for you to purchase protective items for use at work?
  • The use of the item adds to your workplace productivity; and For example - does your use of the protective item enable you to work for more sustained periods?
  • Any other feature of your use of the item for protective purposes which may further indicate your expenditure on that item has the essential character of an outgoing incurred in gaining your assessable income.

 

I'd expect that if your client could demonstrate meeting two or more of these characteristics, then the shoes may very well be deductible.

 

Otherwise, you're welcome to seek a private ruling but I'd imagine that the result would be based heavily on the information contained within this ruling.

 

I hope this helps, but please let me know if you have any other questions!

 

Thanks,

 

Rachael B.

Devotee

Replies 1

@RachaelB 

 

Thanks, I did see that, but sometimes, as you know things aren't always what they appear to be.

 

This client walks as I said 15-20km + per day and has endured personal injury from not wearing adequate footwear.

 

Hard to understand why wearing something like gloves to protect your hands is 100% ok, but protective footwear to prevent serious injury and loss of work isn't.

 

 

 

ATO Certified

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Replies 0

Hi @macfanboy,

 

I appreciate your point of view, but I guess the tricky thing is that most people don't wear gloves as part of their day to day life. Shoes are a bit of a different matter for us, since they're considered to be normal clothing that most people will wear, whether they're at work or not.

 

You could still apply for a private ruling, if you feel that the shoes are a necessary expense that the client has to incur in order to be able to work safely, and you don't feel that he's completely covered by TR 2003/16.

 

Thanks,

 

Rachael B.

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