Pit­falls in get­ting tax re­turn lodged too early

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS - AN­THONY KEANE

THERE has been a big jump in the num­ber of those rush­ing to grab a fast tax re­fund, but there’s a po­ten­tial sting.

Tax spe­cial­ists warn that be­ing quick off the mark can re­sult in costly er­rors be­cause tech­nol­ogy is likely to spot un­de­clared in­come.

An­nual pay­ment sum­maries from em­ploy­ers are not due un­til July 14, while the Aus­tralian Tax­a­tion Of­fice’s pre- filled data such as bank in­ter­est and share div­i­dends may not ap­pear on elec­tronic re­turns un­til mid- Au­gust.

ATO fig­ures ob­tained by News Corp show that about 300,000 in­di­vid­u­als and tax agents lodged elec­tronic re­turns in the first week of July, up 20 per cent on last year.

“More than 20 per cent of lodge­ments have been via a mo­bile de­vice,” ATO as­sis­tant com­mis­sioner Kath An­der­son said.

She said the ATO con­tacted 350,000 peo­ple each year about er­rors in their tax re­turns.

“One of the most com­mon mis­takes we see is peo­ple for­get­ting to de­clare all their in­come,” she said.

“We know that tax­pay­ers like to get in early and lodge in the first month of tax time, but our anal­y­sis shows that if you lodge in July you’re far more likely to make a mis­take by leav­ing out some of your in­come.”

Ms An­der­son said peo­ple should re­mem­ber to in­clude all in­come in­clud­ing wages, in­ter­est and div­i­dends, in­come from the shar­ing econ­omy, gov­ern­ment pay­ments, in­come from cash jobs and cap­i­tal gains.

Al­most four out of five tax­pay­ers re­ceive a tax re­fund, av­er­ag­ing more than $ 2500.

MoneysaverHQ: p18- 19

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