In October 2011, foreign workers were told that they would no longer be able to claim the living away from home allowance after 1 July 2012.

Since then, lobby groups have sought to delay when the allowance would be lost.

Those attempts have been partly successful, with Treasurer Wayne Swan announcing in the budget that reforms to the tax concession will allow those who have entered into arrangements prior to 7.30pm on May 8, 2012, to continue claiming the tax concession until July 1, 2014.

Rumours within the treasury indicated that this transitional rule will only apply to those who legitimately maintain a second home in Australia, in addition to their actual home.

Effectively, the clarification means that all temporary residents will no longer have access to LAFHA from July 1, this year.

Irish and other temporary workers in Australia had been benefiting from the lucrative tax break, using it to boost their take-home pay.

Many recruitment agencies had offered the allowance as part of their salary packaging.

 

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