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Deduct the laundry costs for your work clothes from your taxes!

Does your job require specific clothing? We will show you which work clothes and cleaning costs you can deduct from your taxes!

Prerequisite for the deduction of the laundry costs

Not all work clothes are the same. At least from a tax perspective. This includes only the wardrobe that you wear exclusively in a professional context. The following clothes do not count as work clothes: underwear, socks and "normal shoes".

Naturally the question arises: Can I deduct the laundry costs for my suit from my  taxes? Unfortunately it is not that simple. If you also wear your suit to private events, it no longer counts as work clothing. A wedding, a birthday or other events take place outside the professional context.

What counts as typical work clothes?

  • Uniforms for police officers or military personnel
  • Protective clothing: Helmets, gloves, special shoes, lab coats
  • white coats in the medical and nursing professions
  • Gowns/ robes for the legal profession
  • Suit and costume for airline staff or service staff (for example restaurant staff)

Of course, as soon as a company logo appears on a shirt, suit or other garment, it is workwear. Accordingly, you can only wear it for the exercise of your profession thus making it tax deductible.

Also interesting: sportswear for official participation in company sports events also qualify as work clothes and are therefore tax deductible.

Unfortunately, the cleaning of the clothes that you wear for a secondary profession is not included.

Charging for the use of your private washing machine and the ironing

Now the question naturally arises: How much can I deduct? Since one can only estimate, the Federation of German Consumer Organisations provides empirical values. You can use these to determine your personal consumption.

Factors that play a role here are, for example, people in the household, the number of degrees or the use of a dryer. Because this naturally also leads to higher electricity consumption.

For example

1 kilogram of laundry in a 2-person household, costs of EUR 0,50 for hot wash, EUR 0,48 for coloured wash, EUR 0,60 for delicates and EUR 0,34 for drying costs are acceptable.

For a policeman with 165 days of service per year, the total amount is 180 EUR.

If you are not in the mood for calculating, there is another simple possibility. As an alternative, a lump sum is available for the purchase and cleaning of work clothes. This amounts to 110€ per year. Up to this limit no receipts are usually required!

Bonus tipp

You cannot deduct clothes that you also use in private - we already know that. However, if your private clothes have been damaged or got dirty at work, you can also deduct the cost of cleaning them!

So you see, clean laundry is worth it!

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