The ATO is cracking down on work-related deductions this tax time, with car expenses, travel, internet and mobile phone usage, and employment-related education deductions all under scrutiny.
Of $21 billion in work-related deductions Australians claimed last financial year, the tax office believes about $1.2 billion is rorted.
Car expenses are the most likely be over-estimated, with one in three employees claiming deductions for car travel.
“It’s important to remember that a small amount of non-compliance for an individual can lead to big dollars,” an ATO spokeswoman told Money.
“There are 13 million taxpayers, so if everyone pays $1 less than they should, it adds up to a lot.”
The tax office is using increasingly sophisticated technology and data-matching to catch out taxpayers doing the wrong thing.
“There are three golden rules to remember when making work-related expenses claims,” she said.
“You must have spent the money yourself and weren’t reimbursed, it must be directly related to earning your income, and you must have a record to prove it.”
The ATO is also paying particular attention to omitted income and deductions being claimed for rental properties.