Pexels Nataliya Vaitkevich 6863260

Top Tips For Tax Time

Tax time is upon us, as the financial year rolled over on July 1. This means that taxes are due – and if you’ve never done them before, that can be quite scary. Not to worry though! Once you know what you’re doing, it’s a breeze.

How do I know if I need to pay tax?

If you are working, or receiving a payment from Centrelink, then you need to lodge a tax return. Even if you are below the tax threshold or have elected to not have tax deducted from your Centrelink pay, you still need to lodge your tax return.

For most people working, tax is deducted on a pay as you go basis – PAYG. This is tax withheld from your pay and is noted on your payslip. When tax times rolls around, your work will provide the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) with your taxable income information. This lets the ATO know how much you’ve earned, how much you owe them, and how much they might owe you.

When do I lodge my tax return?

You can lodge your tax return at any time from 1st of July until the 31st of October.

How do I lodge my tax return?

The easiest way to lodge your tax is directly through the Australian Tax Office. If you’re an Australian resident for tax purposes and have a myGov account you can link the ATO service through that. This makes it much easier to lodge your tax.

What Can I Claim Back on Tax?

Generally speaking you can only claim things back on tax if you have purchased them for your job, or donations if they are greater than $2. You must keep a receipt of your purchases for tax.

The ATO has a list of things that you can claim as deductions, as well as how to claim them, here.

Where do I go if I need help?

UNE Life’s Advocacy and Welfare office is a registered Tax Help centre. If you’re struggling with your tax and have earned less than $60,000 in the financial year, then you can book an appointment with them to help complete and submit your tax return. You can find more information here.

You can also book an appointment with an accountant or registered tax agent. They can help you to prepare and lodge your tax return, as well as manage your deductions. These are paid services available to everyone and can be claimed back on tax in the following financial year.

What if I’m not an Australian citizen?

If you’re an international student living and working in Australia, you may still be considered a resident for tax purposes. Any paid work undertaken in Australia must be declared, and a tax return should be lodged. The ATO has more information available for international students which you can find here.