If you are an artist or into any other form of creative profession, taxes are always a bit of a jumble to deal with, so by the time most artists are done paying their dues to the government, they hardly ever manage to make all the tax claims for which they legally qualify. With the help of Online Tax Return, you can make the return process a lot simpler and easier, but even more importantly, they can also help you to claim your refunds, provided of course, you qualify for any. That brings us to the topic of discussion here; which tax claims do artists and creative professionals usually qualify for?
Website Advertising Costs
You cannot claim your web ad costs in full as they are capital expenses and should be claimed as such, which means that you will be claiming them slowly over the course of many years to come.
Costs Associated with Business Trips
As long as the trip and all associated expenses claimed are related directly to your artistic ventures, they can be claimed. However, meal costs are the tricky part here. For example, including expenses for takeaway meals and beverages are allowed if you are someone who works in the film industry and you are on set/studio, but other than that, such claims may not hold. On the other hand, restaurant bills can be claimed as travelling expenses, as long as the restaurants are located outside your home city.
Rent Deduction for a Home Office
If you are a painter (digital or otherwise), sculptor or in any other, similar creative profession, it is very likely that you have a home office or studio where you spend a majority of your hours. You can make a tax claim on the rent that you pay for that home office. Now, this is tricky since the main structure is also your home and residential rent expenses cannot be included here. In order to make that claim, you will need to calculate the estimated home office rent by measuring the amount of space it occupies within the total real estate. In order to make this claim though, there needs to be a clear distinction between the residential sections of the house and your office or studio.
Any Repair and Maintenance Work
Whether it’s the home office we are talking about or a fully-fledged studio of your own, artists can claim the repair and maintenance costs associated with their place of work. There’s a difference between repair/maintenance and renovations though, albeit a thin one. Improvements and renovations will be written off as long-term assets by the ATO.
Cost of Presentation
This one applies primarily to actors, but they can also apply to other creative professionals, but the concerned expenses need to be associated in some way to the artist’s work and income. The Australian Taxation Office will pay close attention to the proportion between your claimed tax deduction for presentation, and your income.
Whether or not any of these apply in a particular situation will vary of course, but now you know some of the lesser known expenses which you can get a refund for.