The ATO is cracking down on the black economy, targeting businesses that are not declaring cash revenues, from restaurants through to home cleaners, in a bid to bring billions of dollars back into the tax net. The Tax Office has stepped up audits of small businesses including cafes and restaurants, carpentry and electrical services, hair, beauty and nail specialists, building trades, road freight and waste skip operators. Also in the ATO’s sights are cleaners, who are almost always paid in cash for working in clients’ homes.

Dogs can be a legitimate tax deduction when used in the following ways:
• On farms for rounding up sheep, cattle and other livestock.
• Guard dogs at factories.
• Guarding tradespersons tools on work sites from theft. The purchase cost of the dog is not deductible as it is a capital cost. Training fees are also deemed non-deductible by the ATO (see ATO ID 2011/18). But the vet bills and pet food bills may qualify as a tax deduction.

BARRISTER'S- Allowable Deductions

• Chambers rent
• Clerks fees
• Business use of home
• Phones and mobile phones
• Practice certificate
• Indemnity insurance
• Bank charges
• Data Protection Act payments
• Bar council and other relevant association subscriptions
• Printing and postage
• Accountancy and other professional fees
• Books
• Stationery
• Hotels
• Computer software
• Travel
• Parking and petrol for business mileage
• Collars, bands and studs
• Costs of CPD training
• Devilling
• Books
• Wigs and gown
• Suitcase trolley bags

Employees undertake overseas conferences, courses and study tours for a variety of reasons including to improve their qualifications and knowledge, experience another culture, travel, network, and gain new ideas and insights. Travel expenses for overseas conferences, courses and study tours will generally be deductible if:

• They enable a taxpayer to become more proficient in carrying out their current income earning activities.
• Will likely lead to an increase in the taxpayer’s income from their current work related activities.

LAWYERS............ Day to day tax deductions can be very beneficial and there are some tax deductions that every lawyer should know.

1. Business operating expenses

2. Travel

3. Office deductions

4. Hiring workers

Employee Lawyers:
The ATO has prepared an info bulletin on tax deductions specifically for solicitors, articled clerks, law clerks and other paralegals who are employees in the public or private sector. Taxation Ruling 95/9 explains the claims that you can and cannot make by looking at the common expenses you might incur as an employee lawyer.

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