Monday, May 12, 2008

Tax Return Time

Ok kiddies, its tax return time, yeah!! I must confess that even I, a business nerd do not enjoy doing my tax return. But it must be done and hopefully you will get a bit of money out of it!
A financial year is from July 1st to June 30th the following year. This is the period of which your income is totaled and your tax is calculated from the tax you have already paid and that which you should have paid.
By the end of the financial year your employers should send you a group certificate as a total of your income and tax. You then have from July 1st to October 31st to lodge your tax return. Remember, the earlier you get it done the earlier you get any returns.
To carry out a tax return you must have a tax file number and group certificates from all of your employers over the past 12 months. If you don’t know if you need to lodge one go to and answer the questionnaire there to find out.
If you do have to complete one there are lots of ways to do so. You can go to and complete the online e-tax section or over the phone. You can also pick up a hard copy of the TaxPack 2008 at newsagents and some book shops. Some registered tax agents offer student discounts to help do your tax returns. It can be a good idea to use a professional for this as they know the ins and outs of what can be deducted and get you your return quickly.
After you lodge your return they may say you owe the government tax. If this is the case the earliest you will have to pay it is November 21st, regardless of when you lodge your tax return.
Frequently asked questions around tax returns are about what work related expenses can you tax deduct? This is when a professional is handy. Basic things to think about are:

- Work uniforms with logos or embroidery on them are generally tax deductible
- Laundry and dry cleaning of these uniforms are also generally tax deductible
- Every industry and role will vary from what they will be allow to tax deduct. For instance, the modeling business will allow you to tax deduct haircuts and pedicures where as some sales role will include home internet and phone.
- Tax deductible car and public transport use is only considered between work hours. The use of your car or transport to get to and from work is not included.
- A percentage of educational expenses such as pencils, textbooks can be deducted if the studies are in direct connection with your employment.

Good luck and I hope it is as painless as possible!