What makes me a nonresident for income tax purposes?


Your status as a non-resident of Australia for tax purposes is closely related to:

  • The purpose of your visit, for example, you came on working holiday or a short period of study
  • The length of your stay, for example, you spend less than six months in Australia
  • Your behavior during your stay, for example, you travel from place to place
  • The absence of family or business ties in Australia
  • The lack of Australian assets, such as a home
  • You are visiting, traveling and working in various locations
  • Leave Australia permanently



Your status is unlikely to change unless you apply for an extension of your 12-month working holiday visa or for permanent Australian residency with the Department of Immigration and Citizenship.


You may, however, change your status to a resident for tax purposes by demonstrating that you lived and worked in the same place for longer than six months during the tax year.


Determine your status using the ATO decision tool.

I used my car to go to work. Can I deduct these expenses?


You cannot claim the cost of normal trips between home and work, even if

  • You did minor tasks on the way, such as picking up mail
  • You had to travel between work and home more than twice a day
  • You were on call
  • There was no public transport near your work
  • You worked outside of normal business hours, such as overtime
  • Your home was a place of business and you traveled directly to a place of employment

The ATO considers all of this travel private and it is thus not deductible.