Do you need to wear the same uniform to work every day?
Or maybe there’s a dress code policy and you need to wear a suit to work every day?
If so, then you might be eligible for a work clothing tax deduction!
However, things are not as simple as they might seem. There are a few rules you need to consider before claiming your work clothing tax deduction.
Let’s take a look at the work clothing expenses you can and can’t claim…
What work clothing expenses can you claim as a tax deduction?
The cost of buying and cleaning:
- occupation-specific clothing
- protective and unique clothing (i.e. not everyday wear)
- clothing that allows the public to easily recognise your occupation – such as the checked trousers a chef wears
- clothing and footwear that you wear to protect yourself from the risk of illness or injury posed by your job or the environment in which you do your job.
Tip: In order to be considered protective clothing, the items must provide a sufficient degree of protection against that risk. This protection includes:
- fire-resistant and sun-protection clothing (including sunglasses)
- hi-vis vests
- non-slip nurse’s shoes
- rubber boots for concreters
- steel-capped boots, gloves, overalls, and heavy-duty shirts and trousers
- overalls, smocks and aprons you wear to avoid damage or soiling to your ordinary clothes when you’re at work.
You might also be interested in: Tax Deductions for Travel Expenses: Travel Smarter and Cheaper
What expenses you can’t claim for your work clothing tax deduction?
You can’t claim buying or cleaning expenses for clothes that aren’t specific to your occupation.
[ctt template=”7″ link=”3Z2E0″ via=”no” ]You can’t claim buying or cleaning expenses for clothes that aren’t specific to your occupation.[/ctt]
For example, let’s say you work in an office that has a specific dress code. So you need to wear a suit to work every day. If you can wear that suit outside of your office, you can’t claim the expense as a work clothing tax deduction.
If you work in a clothing store, you can’t claim a tax deduction for the clothes you purchase in that store. Even if your work dress code demands you to wear clothes from that specific clothing store during your work hours, the outfits do not fall in the categories described above.
You can’t claim a tax deduction for regular clothing such as jeans, shorts, t-shirts, socks etc. unless they’re protective equipment. In this case, however, you will have to prove they are essential to your job.
You might also be interested in: What Can An Uber Driver Claim As A Tax Deduction
How about mandatory and non-mandatory work uniforms?
In the case of mandatory work clothing such as specific uniforms that identify you as an employee of a specific company, the buying and cleaning costs are deductible.
With non-mandatory work uniforms, you can claim a deduction for it only if it has a specific logo or design that identifies you as part of a specific company.
Generic uniforms like a white t-shirt and black trousers aren’t tax deductible.
As you can see, not all clothing you wear at work is tax deductible. However, this brief summary of what you can and can’t deduct as a work clothing expense will help you understand if you can claim a tax deduction for your own work clothing.
Let’s discuss practical solutions that can help you find the right tax solutions and deductions for you and your business. Sometimes, the right solutions can start with identifying which of your monthly expenses can be deductible. Let’s get in touch here.