Log books & motor vehicle deductions

Let’s talk about log books! 

As we start the new tax year, it’s time to start thinking about log books. Log books are your way of justifying claims for motor vehicle deductions for Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) purposes. 

What is a log book?

Log books are a record of work related travel over a period of time. It is required over at least 12 weeks. Once a log book is completed it is valid for 3 years. Once the log book is completed, a percentage of work related travel is calculated over the selected time period. All expenses incurred on the vehicle are then apportioned based on the percentage calculated and the resulting figure will be taken as the deduction for motor vehicle expenses. These expenses can include registration fees, fuel, service costs, insurance, etc. it is important to record these over the year to get your maximum deduction.

What kind of travel is recorded?

Only certain amounts of travel can be recorders as work related travel. Any travel that is required for work such as a visit to a client. This type of travel must start at work or from a different client. You can also claim travel between two workplaces. It is very important that you don’t record travel that is from work to home or vice  versa. This type of travel is not available to be claimed.

Who needs to complete one?

You need to complete a log book if you use your vehicle for a significant amount during the year. There are two different methods of claiming motor vehicle deductions, cents per kilometre or the logbook method. If your travel is close to or above 5000 kilometres it is recommended you keep a log book so as to maximise your deductions. Another reason for a log book will be if you receive a vehicle as part of salary packaging as well as if you receive a motor vehicle allowance.

How do I record the travel?

There are numerous ways to record this. If you are interested in trying this on an app, try our Accru app which has a function to record a log book. If this doesn’t suit there is also the ATO app which can also help you record your expenses during the year. If you prefer a more traditional approach you can also get a paper log book at stationary shops or contact your Accru representative and they can find one for you.

If you would like to discuss log books in further detail or have queries about your motor vehicle deductions, please contact one of our Tax Specialists today on (03) 9835 8200. Alternatively, you can complete your details below and we’ll be in touch.

About the Author
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Gareth Livingston
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