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Working from home due to coronavirus? Here's what you claim on tax

Claim the expenses directly related to your income. Source: Harjit Singh

If you're working from home due to the coronavirus restrictions, you will be able to claim the work-related proportions of household costs. Sydney-based accountant Harjit Singh explains what you can claim as tax deductions.

Mr Singh says the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has issued new guidelines for work-related tax deductions in the wake of more people working from home.

The new arrangement will allow people to claim a rate of 80 cents per hour for all their running expenses.


  • Employees can claim 80 cents per hour tax deduction for each hour of work done
  • Employees can't claim a deduction for items that their workplace has provided 
  • There are three ways to make these claims

Mr Singh, however, warns that not all expenses are tax-deductible under this new provision.

"You will have to show that you have actually spent the money on items required for your working from home and that these expenses are directly related to your earnings. You will also need to keep all the records to prove your spendings to make these claims," he says.

Explaining how these claims can be made, Mr Singh says there are three ways: "The shortcut method, the fixed-rate method and the actual cost method." He adds that the shortcut method is "perhaps the simplest of all three methods."

"All you have to do is maintain a timesheet of the number of hours you worked on each day of the week to claim 80 cents per hour for all additional running expenses," says Mr Singh.

Click on the player above to listen to the interview in Punjabi.

People in Australia must stay at least 1.5 metres away from others. Check your state’s restrictions on gathering limits.

Testing for coronavirus is now widely available across Australia. If you are experiencing cold or flu symptoms, arrange a test by calling your doctor or contact the Coronavirus Health Information Hotline on 1800 020 080.

The federal government's coronavirus tracing app COVIDSafe is available for download from your phone's app store.

SBS is committed to informing Australia’s diverse communities about the latest COVID-19 developments. News and information is available in 63 languages at

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