There are a huge number of reasons why people lodge tax returns in Australia each year. So, if you want to know if you actually need to lodge a return for yourself, this post will outline the different reasons why you should lodge your return before the 31st October 2017 deadline.

Justification 1

If you were a resident in Australia and paid tax under the PAYG instalment or withholding system or tax was withheld from any payments which were made directly to you. This applies to the vast majority of working Australians.

Justification 2

You did not meet with the eligibility requirements for the seniors/pensioners tax offset, but you received a payment/s, which meant that your overall taxable income was greater than $20,542.

Justification 3

You did meet with the eligibility requirements for the seniors/pensioners tax offset, but your rebate income was greater than:

  • $23,279 if you were separated, single, widowed at any point during the year.
  • $31,279 if you had a spouse, but one of lived in a nursing home or you lived apart because of illness.
  • $28,974 if you lived with your spouse for the entire year.

If you need help establishing your 2017 rebate income, you can use this tool from the ATO to help you.

Justification 4

You did not meet with the eligibility requirements for the seniors/pensioners tax offset, but your taxable income was greater than:

  • $18,200 if you resident in Australia for tax purposes for the full year.
  • $416 if you were below the age of 18 years as of 30th June 2017.
  • $1 if you were a foreign resident, but you still had an Australian taxable income that was not subject to having a final non-resident withholding tax withheld from it.

Justification 5

If you are taking care of an estate for a person who passed away during 2017-2018, then you will need to consider completing a non-lodgement advice form as long as none of the above criteria is applicable. If a tax return is needed, then use this link to get help completing the relevant information on a tax return for a deceased estate.

Other Generic Reasons

  • You had reportable superannuation contributions or fringe benefits amounts on your PAYG payment summary.
  • You were entitled to a private health insurance rebate. However, you did not make a claim for your correct entitlement as a premium reduction.
  • You continued with a business.
  • You want to claim a loss you made in the current or previous year.
  • You were a resident in Australia for tax purposes, but you had a foreign employment income that was exempt of $1 or more.
  • You were in receipt of income from distributions or dividends that are in excess of $18,200, or $416 if you under the age of 18 on 30TH June 2017.

For a complete list of exclusions and requirements, and for the latest and most up to date ATO guidance, please visit their website.

If you do not need to lodge a tax return in 2017, then you are still obligated to complete a non-lodgement advice form before the October 31st deadline.