For the first time, the ATO will be checking people’s deductions in real time as they complete their online tax returns, and is warning taxpayers if they seem unusually high.

People shouldn’t avoid claiming work-related expenses however, now is the time to start organising things and making last-minute tax-deductible purchases.

Electronic items, books and magazines, tools and equipment are among things to consider this month, and remember that anything costing under $300 can be deducted instantly in full.

As per the ATO assistant commissioner, Graham Whyte people should claim everything they are entitled to, no more, no less.

Areas for work related deductions are cars, clothing and home office expenses. if you claim a deduction you need to remember three golden rules:

  1. Make sure you spent the money yourself and you were not reimbursed
  2. Ensure that the money spent is related to your job
  3. All the money spent has to be recorded to prove it

The ATO will be paying extra attention to people whose work-related deductions are higher than expected, focusing on car expenses, travel, internet, phone, and self-education.

Their online myTax lodgement system is its first line of defence. Before returns are lodged, the ATO might tell people that they shall be audited if they continue to file the claim in some cases.

Statistics show that work-related claims have been rising, and the ATO’s systems can now instantly compare deductions with previous claims and typical claims by other taxpayers.