The Tax Office keeps an eye on its reported “tax gaps”, which represent the gap between taxes paid, and taxes owed but not paid. Its latest update shows a $1.8 billion gap in corporate Australia, and an $8.7 billion gap among individuals.
The biggest revenue gap is constituted by individuals, and the Tax Office has long circled work-related expenses as a major contributing factor to the deficit.
Work-related expenses often have a small individual price tag, but given the volume of individual tax returns, this compounds heavily.
According to national tax and accounting network H&R Block, the following will be high on the ATO’s agenda this year:
- Claims for work-related clothing
- Deductions for home office use
- Overtime meals claims
- Union fees and subscriptions
- Mobile phone and internet costs
- Motor vehicle claims where taxpayers take advantage of the 68 cent per km flat rate for up to 5,000km
- $300 dollar or less deductions without receipts
Last year, other items such as unexplained wealth, cash-only businesses and unpaid superannuation were also matters of priority for the Tax Office.