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Junior Junior - baby barrister blogger
12 August, 2008  
Life without a tax bracket

The all-consuming nature of life at the bar sees Junior Junior dropping entirely out of the tax system. She is one barrister whose non-tax status seems to be legit

imageOnce upon a time, around August, I would get fidgety about how I was going to massage some loosely described work/social expenditure to provide tax relief.

This year I go to the ATO with a clear conscience.

I didn’t hit the threshold to pay tax.

Most of my social activities were provided gratis by the Bar Association’s free continuing professional development program.

And bless their cotton socks – alcohol is often provided.

A highlight from this year’s CPD was a seminar about the ins and outs of professional indemnity insurance.

So much verbiage and so little help.

All I wanted to know was which one is going to be the cheapest insurance for a junior; with the biggest excess on the basis that risk is associated with actually doing paid work.

But it got even weirder because no one will actually reveal the insurance premiums until you apply for the insurance.

A combination of confusion, dithering and waiting for insurers to reply caused a last minute scramble to get insured – by anyone at any cost.

And cost it did. Small satisfaction was gained knowing it is tax-deductible – if I reach the tax threshold by next year.

A strange phenomenon has emerged socially.

Friends I have known for years make subtle comments about my income. Closest friends who once may have greeted me with “How are you”, now say, “Has anyone paid you yet”.

Those less close refer to me “raking it in”.

However, the effect I least predicted about going to the bar was that it is all-consuming.

I now have a theory, which I might write-up and send to the Lancet.

The bar sets off osmosis that silently works away causing every pore in the body to become an entry point for bar particles.

Earlier I attributed it to a monthly rise in oestrogen levels, which would readjust. The gluteus is particularly at risk.

Recognising this, I invested in a very comfy and supportive chair so that I wouldn’t have to stand-up so often to relieve the crick in my back.

As I sat back in my new-fangled chair this week I opened an over-stuffed enveloped from Tyre-Kicker.

Then I took some exercise and went and made a cup of tea.


Reader Comments

Posted by: Anonymous
Date: August 13, 2008, 1:46 am

I once openend an envelope from a firm of tyre-kickers, only to find that of the three cheques enclosed therein, only one was for me, and it was the smallest of the three by a longish way. All three were dated more than two months prior to my receipt of them. I did my barrister colleagues a favour and personally delivered them their cheques that day, figuring that it would be another four months or so before they were paid if I posted them back to the firm for redirection. My personal favourite is when they tell you "you are due to get a cheque from us next Thursday" revealing that they have obviously been dealing with your money.
Posted by: Anonymous
Date: August 18, 2008, 11:57 pm

Big fat law firm: bill client now padded hours, pay barrister by about 2018, keep compound interest. Great stuff - suckers
Posted by: Anonymous
Date: September 17, 2008, 2:02 am

Looks like Vicki Mole has an interesting brief for you - It's all about a little dog and a fight with the local council.....