Tax season is the time of year when individual taxpayers and accountants are busy preparing and filing tax returns for the previous year. Many dread this time of year and found themselves confused by all the forms and requirements. The truth is that the entire process can be quite challenging and frustrating. It is easy to make mistakes, and problems with your taxes can lead to fines.
A solution may be to hire a professional accountant to prepare your tax filing correctly and on time. If you are located in Brisbane, look no further than Syndeo Group, the number one accountant firm offering valuable financial assistance.
What’s more, many people’s employment situations have changed in the past financial year due to the Covid-19 pandemic. To help you prepare and lodge your tax return, Syndeo Group has come up with the following detailed guide.
Who Should Lodge a Tax Return?
According to the ATO (Australian Tax Office), anyone with an income of over $18,200 has to pay taxes. Even if you’ve earned less than the threshold, you still may be required to pay for the Medicare levy. Because many differences regarding tax rates may apply to those who’ve earned less than $18,200, it’s best to contact an expert. An accountant at Syndeo Group can help you better understand whether you should lodge a tax return.
What Documents Should You Collect?
The documentation needed for completing your tax return depends on your job and industry. Some documents you should collect to complete your tax return include:
- PAYG Payment Summary provided by the employer
- Private health insurance details statements
- Bank accounts interest statements
- Government assistance and relief packages payment summaries (including JobSeeker and JobKeeper)
- Charitable donations receipts
- Last year’s tax return accountant fees
What Deductions Can You Claim?
Similar to the documents needed, the deductions you can claim depend both on your job and industry. Generally, you should claim a deduction for any expenses related to work. To prove these deductions, you need proof of purchase, receipts, or other written records.
The most common tax deductions claimed include car, travel, and uniform-related expenses. If you aren’t sure about what items are deductible in your industry, seek professional help from an accountant.
What Deductions Can You Claim when Working from Home?
This year, the ATO focused on the widespread shift to working from home. They have put several measures in place as a “shortcut” method of calculating tax deductions for those who didn’t return to the office.
Those who worked from home can claim 80 cents for an hour spent working from home to cover costs like electricity, phone, and other related expenses. But once you use the shortcut method, you aren’t allowed to claim other work-related expenses. Because of this restriction, it is not always the best method for some jobs and circumstances.
Consult your financial assistance firm to learn about any other changes and measures introduced by the ATO. An experienced accountant, like the ones at Syndeo Group, will have the knowledge needed to help you make the most of your tax return.