Australian Defence

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Defence Force Tax Returns

Moore Refunds, Tax Specialists Understand The Taxation Needs Of Defence Force Members

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Defence Force Tax Returns

Moore Refunds, Tax Specialists Understand The Taxation Needs Of Defence Force Members

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Defence Force Tax Returns

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Australian Defence Force

Moore Refunds, Tax Accountants understand the unique requirements of Defence Force tax. Here are several tax deductions available to all members of the Australian Defence Force. We are specialised in preparing tax returns for Defence Force Members,  working closely with clients all across Australia. So, rest assured, no matter how many times you might be relocated, you will never need to look for another tax agent again.

Great Reasons to Choose Us

Tax Agent/Accountant Specialise in Defence Force Tax: 

  • Defence Force students who are currently studying at either Military College or the ADFA
  • Members of the Defence Force who are either currently deployed or have spent time serving overseas
  • Members of the Defence Force who have other investments including properties, shares or managed funds
  • Members of Special Forces Units – we are aware of what can be disclosed for tax purposes and what needs to remain off-the-record.
  • Extensive knowledge with Army, Navy & Air Force across all ranks and specialities

Phone and email consultations: 

All tax returns are completed over the phoneand email, so there is no need for face to face consultation, and you do not have to leave your base, ship, course or deployment


Continual support for tax returns:

We are aware that it is not always possible to keep tabs on every tax return. Let us do that for you, even if you are an individual or a business trying to catch up on a few late tax returns,  let us take care of that for you,

by completing tax returns via phone and email means we are not limited by locality, so you do not need to change tax agents ever


Maximum returns:

  • Access to professional, experienced, qualified, transparent accountants who will answer all your questions and provide jargon-free advice.
  • Comfort that an experienced, professional tax agent checks every return before it is lodged with the ATO.
  • Tax Agent who know all the specific deductions for your occupation, so you get a great tax return every year
  • Affordable fee (which is completely tax deductible).
  • Tax refunds within 10 to 14 days from lodgement (subject to ATO processing).
  • A safe, secure, website that is operated with absolute integrity

To ensure that you are aware of all Defence force tax deductions and rebates available to you,  Moore Refunds has put together the list of work-related tax deductible expenses and special rebates to which you are entitled, particularly if you are deployed in remote rural areas or overseas, and in relation to the Medicare rebate.


Defence ForceTax Deductions: Medicare Exemption

If you are an Australian Defence Force Reserve memberyou are entitled to full medical treatment under the Australian Defence Force program; you are eligible to receive an exemption from the Medicare levy charge. This exemption applies for the number of days during the year for which you were covered by the Australian Defence Force program.

A full or half exemption is available if you:

  • Full exemption if you have no dependants OR if all of your dependants also fall under an exemption category
  • Full exemption if you have a dependant spouse (and or children) who earns a level of taxable income that requires them to pay Medicare.
  • Have dependent children who do not pay Medicare, and a spouse who is also in an exemption category. In this case, either yourself or your spouse must elect to receive half Medicare exemption.
  • In cases where the above conditions are not met, you are entitled to a half Medicare exemption for the days of the year during which you qualify.

If you reside for more than 183 days in a specifically identified remote area of Australia, you may be eligible to receive a tax benefit known as a Zone Offset. This benefit may also apply if the aggregate time you have spent in a remote area exceeds 183 days for two years.

Three zones may attract an offset benefit:

  • Zone A: Includes specific locations such as Norfolk, Macquarie, Cocos, Christmas, Lord Howe, Heard and McDonald Islands (does not include offshore oil platforms).
  • Zone B: Includes islands that are adjacent to the coastline of the mainland and Tasmania.
  • Special Zone: – includes areas that are more than 250km from the nearest town centre, with a population of less than 2,500.

For assistance with eligibility and the amount you can claim, simply contact your Moore Refunds Accountant


Defence Force Tax Deduction: Overseas Forces Tax Offset:

A special Overseas Forces Tax Offset is available to members of the Australian Defence Force if:

  • You served in a specified overseas locality as a member of the Australian Defence Force or the United Nations armed force.
  • Your income for that service was not specifically exempt from tax.
  • There is no minimal length of time required to ensure that you are entitled to this tax offset. The offset will however be apportioned for time periods less than 183 days.
  • Current specified localities included under the Overseas Forces tax offset include:
  • The Sinai
  • The area comprising the political boundaries and airspace of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (including the province of Kosovo), Albania and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia
  • Total land area, territorial waters and airspace within the internationally recognised boundaries of Israel, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon and Egypt
  • Total land areas, territorial waters and airspace boundaries of the Solomon Islands.
  • Sudan and its territorial waters and airspace
  • Area comprising the land, sea and air areas bounded by the internationally recognised borders of Pakistan
  • Area comprising East Timor and its territorial waters and airspace
  • Area comprising Lebanon and its territorial waters and airspace

Defence Force Tax Deductions: Uniforms and Protective Clothing

  • You can claim the cost of a purchasing and repairing Australian Defence Force or other military uniforms.
  • You can claim the cost of protective clothing and footwear that may be required to perform your duties such as:
  • Overalls
  • Safety hats, glasses and gloves,
  • Steel-capped boots
  • Heavy duty protective shirts and pants
  • Special itemsworn with or as part of a uniform are unconventional in nature, and are allowable deductions. For example, you could claim a deduction for a ceremonial sword worn during parades (note, if the item costs more than $300 it would have to be depreciated for its useful life).
  • Conventional clothing is not tax deductible, even if your employer requires that you wear specific items (such as business suits, specific coloured clothing, certain brands or items that your employer sells).
  • You can claim the cost of renting, repairing and cleaning any of the work-related or protective clothing mentioned above, with the following provisions:
  • If your tax deduction claim for laundry is under $150, no written documentation is required. The Australian Taxation Office calculates the cost of laundry at $1 per load of work-related clothing, or 50 cents per load if other laundry items are included.
  • If you are claiming dry-cleaning or clothing repairs, you are required to keep receipts.

Defence Force  Tax Deductions: Meals and Travel:

  • Defence Force members may claim the cost of meals when working overtime provided you have received a meal allowance from your employer which is based on an Industrial Award. 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 military bases, attending meetings, seminars, conferences, or training that is not being held at your usual place of work.
  • 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 between and/or around military bases, attend meetings, conferences or training that is not held at your usual place of work, or to visit third-party suppliers. 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.

Defence Force Tax Deductions: Equipment and Tools:

  • You can claim a tax deduction for work related equipment and tools that cost less than $300 each.
  • Items worth more than $300 each must be depreciated over the useful life. When you enter the item in our depreciation calculator, it will calculate the correct claim for the current year and carry the balance forward to claim in future years.
  • If an item is used partly for business, and partly for private purposes, then you are entitled to claim the only the business-related portion.
  • Typical equipment and tools eligible for a tax deduction for military personnel include:
  • Tools and equipment required to perform your role in the field
  • Electronic equipment such as computers and mobile phones
  • Backpacks and laptop carry bags etc

Defence Force Tax Deductions:  Education:

A deduction is allowable for the cost of self-education if there is a direct connection between the self education and the ADF member’s current income-earning activities. Self-education costs can include fees, travel, books and equipment

Common self-education expenses include:

  • Course expenses taken at an educational institution (note this does not need to lead to a formal qualification).
  • Language course expenses – where expenses are incurred while employed by the ADF (ie not provided through the military school).
  • Home office running expenses associated with study.
  • Travel expenses (for example from your usual place of work to the educational institution).
  • The cost of subscribing to journals, periodicals and magazines that have content specifically related to ADF member’s work (for example, an Aerospace Engineer purchasing an aeronautical engineering journal).
  • A deduction is allowable for the cost of attending conferences, seminars and training courses to maintain or increase the knowledge, ability or skills required by an ADF member. There must be a relevant connection with the current income-earning activities of the ADF member and these costs must not have been reimbursed by the ADF.


General Expenses:

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

  • Conference and seminar fees
  • Reference books
  • Subscriptions to professional journals and magazines
  • Telephone and internet fees (for the work-related portion only)
  • Home office costs
  • Tax agent fees
  • Donations to registered charities
  • Income Protection Insurance
  • Mess subscriptions

If you have been searching for an experienced, professionally qualified, transparent accountant that truly understands tax rules and regulations in relation to Australian Defence Force Members, then contact the friendly team at Moore Refunds Tax Accountants, today:

Call us on  1300 850 012

Email us at

Contact Moore Refunds for All Your Tax Return Needs