Clothing, Laundry and Dry-cleaning Expenses

Tax Return Online

You can claim a deduction for the expenses of buying and cleaning occupation-specific clothing, protective clothing and unique, distinctive uniforms.

To make a deduction you may be required to have written evidence that you purchased the clothing and diary records or written evidence of your cleaning costs.

If you received an allowance from the employer for clothing or uniforms or laundry or dry-cleaning, show the amount of the allowance on your tax return.

Occupation-specific clothing

You can claim for clothing that is specific to the occupation, is not everyday and allows the public to easily recognise this occupation – such as chef pants.

You can’t claim the cost of purchasing or cleaning clothes you bought to wear for work that are not specific to your occupation, such examples as an employee black trousers and white shirt.

Protective clothing

You can claim for clothing and footwear that you wear to protect yourself from the risk of injury while doing your income-earning activities or the environment in which you are required to carry them out.

Protective clothing includes:

– fire-resistant and sun-protection clothing
– safety-coloured vests
– non-slip nurse’s shoes
– rubber boots for concreters
– steel-capped boots, gloves and overalls

Work uniforms

You can claim for a uniform-compulsory or non-compulsory, that is unique and distinctive to the company you work for.

Clothing is unique if it has been designed and made only for the current employer. Clothing is distinctive if it has the employer’s logo attached and it is not available to the public.

Compulsory work uniform

This is a set of clothing that identifies an employee of an organisation with an enforced policy that makes it compulsory for the employee to wear the uniform while at work.

You may be able to claim a deduction for shoes, socks and stockings where they are a part of a distinctive compulsory uniform and where their characteristics are specified in your employer’s uniform policy.

You may be able to claim expenses for a single item of distinctive clothing if it’s compulsory for you to wear it at work.

Non-compulsory work uniform

Employees can’t claim expenses incurred for non-compulsory work uniforms unless the employer has registered the design with AusIndustry.

Cleaning of work clothing

You can claim the costs of washing, drying and ironing of approved work clothes , or having them dry-cleaned.

You are required to have written evidence, such as diary entries and receipts, for your laundry expenses if both:

– the amount of this claim is greater than $150, and
– your total claim for work-related expenses exceeds $300 – not including car, meal allowance, award transport payments allowance and travel allowance expenses.

Dry-cleaning expenses

You can claim the expenses of dry-cleaning work-related clothing. If your total claim for work-related expenses exceeds $300 – not including car, meal allowance, award transport payments allowance and travel allowance expenses – you are required to have written evidence to substantiate your claim.

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