What you need to tell the tax man

With tax time approaching, do you need to complete a tax return and if so, what do you need to include? Craig Hall from National Information Centre on Retirement Investments (NICRI) has some guidelines to help you decide.

NCRI, tax, end of financial year, tax tips

With tax time approaching, do you need to complete a tax return and if so, what do you need to include? Craig Hall from National Information Centre on Retirement Investments (NICRI) has some guidelines to help you decide.

Well, the new financial year is nearly upon us and that means it’s tax time for many Australians. Not all seniors are required to complete a tax return due to their circumstances. For the 2011/12 financial year the Low Income Tax Offset and Senior Australian Tax Offset (SATO) increases the tax free threshold from $6000 (tax fee threshold for individuals) to $30,685 for singles and $26,680 for each person in a ‘couple’ relationship. If the taxable income is below these figures then seniors may not be required to complete a tax return.

However there are circumstances listed below, where people may still need to complete and submit documentation.  

Private Health Insurance details – If you are a member of a private health fund and have the appropriate cover you may be eligible for a rebate. Those who don’t claim their rebate through reduced premiums would need to include the details of their cover in a tax return or if you are not required to complete a tax return, you will need to claim your rebate through Medicare.  Means testing for the Private Health Insurance Rebate commences 1 July 2012.

Dividends – Any shareholdings held may have generated dividends which should also be included on your tax return so that you can receive the tax benefits from those dividends. The franking credits are effectively a refund of company tax that has been paid on those shares. If no tax return is required due to your income being below the SATO threshold (see above) you may still wish to complete an ‘Application for refund of franking credits for individuals’ form with the ATO. Alternatively you can call the ATO on 13 28 65 and be sure to have your Tax File Number and your share dividend statements to hand.

Donations and details of any other tax-deductible items – If you have made any donations that are tax-deductible, you should have receipts to confirm these amounts. Any other deductible items such as ‘union fees’ and work-related clothing should be included. For more information on deductions that can be claimed visit www.ato.gov.au.

Capital Gains Tax from the sale of assets - If you have disposed of assets (that were purchased after September 1987) in the 2011/12 financial year, you may be subject to capital gains tax. Assets such as shares, investment properties and units from unit trusts/managed funds, are liable for CGT upon sale. For more info on CGT and what assets are subject to CGT, visit www.ato.gov.au. For complex scenarios it may be prudent to speak to an accountant or tax specialist. 

Investment property rental income and costs - To claim deductions you will need to determine costs that are tax-deductible for any investment property owned, as well as the amount of income the property has generated. Costs may include maintenance, property management and loan interest. Again, for complex scenarios it may be prudent to speak to an accountant or tax specialist. 

Click NEXT for details of other items which need to be included on your tax return.

    1  2  Next





    COMMENTS

    To make a comment, please register or login