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Tax talk: Things you need to know to maximise your tax refund this year

10 key things to remember while lodging tax return for the fin year 2020-21. Source: Pixabay/Gurveen Kaur

If you have worked from home during the COVID-19 pandemic, you may be entitled to claim many deductions in your end-of-financial year tax return. The experts suggest that this would mean more money in your pocket this tax time!

The Australian Tax Office is expecting an increase in deductions related to people working from home, such as the cost of electricity, internet, phone, and depreciation in the value of office equipment.

Here we have some quick tips that may help you understand the things that have changed and how you can have a better tax refund after COVID-19 affected Australia throughout the last financial year.

Tax time 2021
Getty Images

Gurveen Kaur who works as an accountant in Melbourne’s southeast suggests that people would see a ‘bigger-than-usual return’ from the Australian Tax Office this EOFY.

“The majority of people who have been working from home due to COVID-19 are entitled to have a bigger tax refund this year,” she says.

“There are a few ways you can work out your deductions related to work from home, depending on the individual circumstances. An easy and straightforward method would be to claim all deductible running expenses with the 80 cents per hour rule.”

“The 52 cents per hour method does not include other expenses such as phone and internet costs, computer consumables, stationery, or the work-related depreciations. But we often see people claiming each of those items separately, to get a bigger and better refund,” she adds.

A woman using a laptop on a dining room table
A woman using a laptop on a dining room table set up as a remote office to work from home. The coronavirus pandemic has dramatically altered the way people have lived their lives over the past year.
AAP (Joe Giddens)

Ms Kaur says that the government’s automatic offsets would continue to support over 10 million low- and middle-income earners.

“It is definitely a better scenario that would see a tax benefit of $1,080 for individuals or up to $2,160 for couples,” she says.

“Those earning under $37,000 will receive $225 or less, while those who earned between $37,000 and $126,000 will receive up to the full $1,080.”

In addition to this information, Ms Kaur also discussed some key tips that may help you maximise your tax refunds this year. For more information, listen to her interview in Punjabi.

Tax talk: Things you need to know to maximise your tax refund this year
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Disclaimer:  The content produced is for general advice only – if you want recommendations specific to your situation it is best to talk to a trusted financial advisor or your accountant.

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