Tax Deductions for Construction Workers

As a construction worker in Australia, you may be eligible for several tax deductions and allowances. Here are some common tax deductions that construction workers in Australia can consider.


    • Overtime meal expenses
    • Travel expenses
    • Car expenses
    • Uniforms and protective clothing
    • Equipment and tools
    • Other work-related expenses
    • General Expenses


    You can claim the cost of meals when working overtime provided you have received a meal allowance from your employer which is based on an industrial law, award or agreement and that allowance is shown separately on your PAYG certificate. You can claim the actual cost of the meal or up to the Australian Taxation Office allowable limit without retaining receipts. Amounts claimed over that amount will need to be supported with receipts.


      You may claim the cost of travel (including any parking, tolls, taxis and public transport), if you are travelling to or from meetings, seminars, conferences, or training that is not being held at your usual place of work or to travel between job sites.

      If you are required to stay away from home overnight for the purposes listed above, you may be eligible for a tax claim for the cost of accommodation and any meals consumed.


        You may claim the cost of your personal car if it is used for work purposes, including travel to meetings, conferences or training that is not held at your usual place of work. If you do plan on claiming the cost of using your personal vehicle, you will need to keep a diary of the number of kilometres travelled.


          You may claim the cost of specific employment clothing as long as it features your employer’s logo.

          There are a few protective clothing items that you may be claim as a tax deduction e.g., safety items such as overalls, gloves, goggles, masks, harnesses, helmets, steel-capped boots, gum boots, high visibility vets and winter outdoor jackets, sun protection items such as sunscreen, hats, sunglasses and sun-protection shirts or jackets.

          You can claim the cost of renting, repairing and cleaning any of the eligible work-related or protective clothing mentioned above.

            Construction workers chatting over coffee representing the concept of tax deductions for construction workers.


            Typical equipment and tools eligible for a tax deduction include:

            • Equipment such as tools, electronic organisers, laptop computers and mobile phones.
            • Materials or supplies that you buy for use at work such as safety gear, first aid equipment, backpack or belt bag.
            • Stationery, diary, logbook, work bag or briefcase


            There are a few other work-related expenses that may be claimed as tax deductions including:

            • Union Fees
            • Magazines or journals
            • The cost of renewing machinery operating licences and tickets that are required for your work, but not including your normal driver’s licence.
            • Books, magazines and journals
            • Telephone and internet fees (for the work-related portion only)


            There is also a range of general tax deductions, available to all regardless of profession or occupation, including:

            • Conference and seminar fees
            • Self-education
            • Tax agent fees
            • Donations to registered charities
            • Income Protection Insurance

            This article is for general information only. It does not make recommendations nor does it provide advice to address your personal circumstances. To make an informed decision, always contact a registered tax professional.

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