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Claiming protective items, equipment, and products

Personal protective equipment (PPE)

To claim a deduction for personal protective equipment (PPE) you have purchased to use at work, the expense must be incurred by yourself.  A deduction cannot be claimed if your employer:

  • pays for the items
  • provides the items
  • reimburses you for the cost you incur.

The PPE must also be used in direct connection to earning your employment income:   This means:

  • you are exposed to the risk of illness or injury in the course of carrying out your work duties
  • in the circumstances there would be reason to expect the use of that kind of protective item
  • you use the item in the course of carrying out your work duties.

Depending on the nature of your employment, PPE may include the following items:

  • hardhats and helmets
  • Safety glasses or goggles
  • Earplugs
  • Gloves
  • Face masks or face shields
  • Sanitizer
  • Anti-bacterial spray.

Personal protective equipment during COVID-19

During the COVID-19 pandemic, you may be able to claim a deduction for the cost of buying a face mask to wear at work if:

  • your employment duties require you and other employees to be at your place of work
  • a face mask is not provided to you by your employer, and
  • you need to wear a mask because your duties bring you in close contact with clients.

In order to claim a deduction for other items of PPE, such as gloves, sanitiser or anti-bacterial spray, your specific work duties must either:

  • require you to have physical contact or be in close proximity to clients or customers while carrying out your duties
  • involve you cleaning a premises.

This will usually be people working in the following industries:

  • medical industry (such as doctors, nurses, dentists and allied health workers)
  • cleaning industry
  • airline industry
  • hairdressing and beautician industry
  • retail, café and restaurant industry.

Ensure you keep all records when purchasing PPE items so that you can claim a deduction.

Refer to the ATO website for more information of other items that can be claimed as a deduction or contact us or phone on (03)9848 5933.


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