What dates do you need to know for tax time?
Has tax season snuck up on you?
Most of us don’t have an Australian tax calendar pinned up on the wall. Luckily, the important dates are probably more straightforward than you think. If you’re not sure what they are, read on and jot the key timings in your diary to get yourself on track for your 2018 tax return.
4 key dates to know for tax time
You could say June 30 is New Financial Year’s Eve – a chance to reflect on the fiscal year that was, and make new plans for the future. Whatever your financial plans for 2018/19, it can be a good idea to review where you’re at while you’ve got money on your mind.
The Suncorp income tax calculator can help you see how much you could earn before and after tax, based on your total income, which can help give you a simple picture of your finances for the year ahead.
Like New Year’s Day, the first day of the financial year can be a fresh start for your finances.
The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) can process your tax return from July 2 and individual
taxpayers have until 31 October – just shy of 4 months – to lodge their return. It will need to cover the whole previous financial year, from 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2018.
Top Tip: Budget Planners
Understanding your salary vs your spending can help you see where you could save better, and spend better throughout the year. Using an online budget planner is a great way to get a visual of your yearly spending.
You should receive a PAYG summary from each employer that has paid you during the financial year. This summary includes the total amount paid to you and the total tax withheld and paid to the ATO. Most people receive this summary by 14 July, so if you haven’t, ask your employer/s from the last 12 months to send them out.
Have a good look over your payment summaries and make sure everything’s correct. Check that your super has been paid and your salary is correct. If anything needs to be looked into, it’s a good idea to get onto it as soon as possible. The ATO will receive a similar statement a month later, so it’s important to sort any issues out before then.
It’s fitting that this date is the same as Halloween, because forgetting to lodge your tax return in time can turn into a real nightmare.
Avoid the horror show by setting reminders on your devices so you remember well in advance. Or better yet, just get it done well before the deadline so you won’t have it on your mind and you’ll get any tax refund sooner.
It’s not a good idea to leave your tax return to the last minute: it can take longer than you think, and if you’re submitting it by post there’s no guarantee it’ll get to the tax office in time. Luckily, if you know you’ll struggle because of the flow of your year, you can apply for an extension to the deadline in advance. It’s always better to complete your tax return properly and lodge it after a delay, than rush in an unfinished form at the eleventh hour.
If you use a registered tax agent, your deadline will probably be a bit later, but you should still consult with them prior to 31 October to confirm that you are on the tax agent’s lodgement list and to confirm the deadline.
Armed with a few tax tips and an understanding of the key dates, you can easily stay on top of things.
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