Do you spend your days caring for or supervising our future generations? Whether you’re a child care worker, child care assistant, nanny, kindergarten assistant or pre-school aide, you’re entitled to some attractive tax deductions that you may have been unaware of until now. Use our child care workers tax deductions guide below to make sure you’re getting the most out of our tax return this year!
What Are The Common Tax Deductions for Child Care Workers?
Uniform and Clothing Expenses for Child Care Workers
Firstly, if you are required to wear any branded clothing to work, this is tax deductible. This could include shirts, hats, pants or skirts. The general rule is if it’s company specific and not available to the general public, then it is tax deductible.
On the other hand, items that are available to the general public like plain black pants or a black skirt cannot be claimed, even if they’re required as part of your uniform by your employer.
You can also claim the laundry and cleaning costs of these clothes. Just keep track of how many washes you do per week. Then, the Etax return will do the maths for you to ensure you get the maximum claim.
If you’re doing art activities, cooking or running around outside with little (or big) ones, the below deductions could apply to you:
- Sun protection (hats, sunscreen, sunglasses)
- Protective footwear
Important note: You can only claim items that you’ve paid for yourself. If your employer provides any of the above items or reimburses you for purchases you make, you can’t include those on your return.
Child Care Workers Training and Self-Education
Training is a common tax deduction for child care workers. It’s a job which often requires further upskilling and training to ensure you meet all necessary industry requirements.
As long as the course relates directly to your current job, the fees and related expenses are usually tax deductible. Take a look at the list of common deductions below:
- In-service / professional development courses
- Textbooks or manuals required for training
- Equipment and materials required
- Blue card renewals (not the initial application)
- Travel expenses including flights, transport, meals and accommodation (if required to stay overnight).
To find out more, read our self-education expenses deduction guide.
If you are ever required to pick up supplies, attend meetings, excursions, sporting events or training courses, the cost of using your car is usually tax deductible. (Just keep in mind that travel from home to work is not claimable).
For most child care workers travel is incidental, so the cents per kilometre rate of 68c per km works best. Just be sure to keep track of the kilometres you travel as you can claim up to 5,000km per year. However, if you’re someone who drives a lot more as part of your job, the logbook method may be more beneficial to you.
Have a look at our car expenses deductions guide for the different ways you can claim and decide which method works best for you.
Ellie attends sporting activities every Wednesday and Friday afternoons with her group of children. She drives her own car from the child care centre to and from the venue, which comes to a total of 8km each day.
Using the cents per work-related kilometer method, Ellie calculates the following:
- 8km x 2 days = 16km per week
- 16km x 48 weeks (Not 52 as Ellie has 4 weeks holiday per year) = 768km
- 768 x $0.68 = $522.24
Therefore, Ellie can claim a total of $522.24 on her tax return for car expenses this year!
Equipment and Work Materials
Child care workers are often out of pocket supplying various items for the children they care for or supervise. Below are some examples of the tax deductions you can claim often claim back:
- Teaching aids
- Art and craft materials
- Musical instruments
- Food and toiletries
If you are purchasing any of the above items for work purposes, these can be claimed back on tax. Just make sure you are keeping track of your receipts as you go and that you aren’t reimbursed for the purchases.
Mobile Phone Expenses
It’s not unusual for child care workers to use their personal phone to contact other staff members or parents.
If you make (or receive) calls for work on your personal phone it’s likely you can claim a portion of your monthly bill as a tax deduction. Just go through one of your monthly bills and work out what percentage of your calls are work related. You can claim that portion of your bill as a deduction on your return.
Julie is a kindergarten supervisor and often uses her personal mobile phone to call staff to cover shifts as well as call suppliers. As a result, these costs are tax deductible. She chose a monthly phone bill that was an accurate representation of a ‘typical’ month.
She made 24 calls in total and 12 were work related. That equals 50% of Julie’s total phone bill. Therefore, as Julie pays $49 per month, she can now claim half of that back on her tax return.
Half of $49 = $24.50
$24.50 x 12 months = $294.00 that Julie can claim on her yearly tax return!
Other tax deductions for child care workers:
- Association or union membership fees
- Work related books or library additions
- Work related internet (you can claim the percentage of your bill that applies to work related use)
- Organising and attending excursions, day trips or events
- Donations to registered charities (does not apply if you received something in return eg. Raffle tickets)
- Previous year’s tax agent fees – therefore, whatever you spent on your tax return last year is tax deductible
Etax are here to make the process as smooth and easy as possible. Should you have any questions regarding your tax deductions or entitlements, please don’t hesitate to contact us at [email protected]. If you prefer, you can head to our Facebook page and send us a message.