If you haven't filled out your 2016-2017 tax return yet, you better get on it. But before you lodge anything, it pays to do some research on what you can actually claim. Depending on your line of work, you may be eligible for a refund on everything from pet dogs to Netflix! Here are five unusual deductions that you need to consider.
Tagged With tax time
Missed the deadline to lodge your tax return? You’re not alone: heaps of Australians forget every year to file by the October 31 deadline.
Whether you’re behind by just one year or several, don’t panic. There are things you can do to stay on the ATO’s good side: but don’t dawdle. The longer you wait, the higher penalty you can pay – and those can reach in the hundreds of dollars.
Whether you're running your own business, working as a book-keeper or accountant for someone else, or the the IT guy making sure the business has access to the tools they need there's one software category you have to keep in your business' application kitbag. That's accounting software. But today's applications go far further than double-entry accounting, raising invoices and producing a monthly or quarterly report for the tax office. They integrate with warehouse and logistics applications, point of sale terminals and other systems making them the heart of your business' backoffice. Two of the biggest players on the market are the veteran MYOB and the fast-rising challenger Xero.
This year, the biggest tax news for small businesses was the extension of the $20,000 write-off, up from $1000 in previous years. In addition, the company tax rate for small businesses has decreased and more businesses are now eligible for most small business tax concessions. We take a look at all of these changes and more.
Tax time is a fun time of year as most of us lodge our returns and then wait patiently for our tax refunds to arrive from the ATO. But preparing and lodging a tax return can be intimidating for some; particularly younger taxpayers who are less familiar with the process. Here are six common tax mistakes that younger people often make -- and how to avoid them.
While tax time usually conjures the image of piles of paper and shoeboxes full of old receipts, it doesn't have to be that way forever. If you're sick of shuffling through hard copy documents to get your finances sorted every July, here are our top five apps that'll save you time and stress this tax time.
There are plenty of incentives baked into the tax code for business and individuals -- to both assist with the day-to-day and invest in new gear. While it may not always make sense to claim a deduction, doing so can be a big help if you need some new tech.
As much as throwing a tantrum feels like a natural option when it comes to organising your life for tax time, there are things you can do to make it seem less of a chore. While you're organising your finances, it's a good time to take care of other notoriously avoided tasks around the home. Here's our list of the best deals and must-do tasks to get you sorted before June 30 rolls around (it's not far away so get acting!)
With June now officially upon us and the financial year almost over, if you've been thinking of purchasing a PC, now is a sensible time. If it's a business machine, you'll be able to deduct at least some of the cost in this financial year -- and with sub-$1,000 machines now common, you might be able to do it in a lump rather than over four years (check with your accountant).
An even more pressing reason to buy now is that manufacturers are officially supposed to stop selling any machines (apart from certain ultra-portables) with XP on them after June 30. If you want a PC that actually has a useful Windows operating system, not the pig-with-lipstick experience of Vista, then you'd best order soon. While there'll be downgrade rights options after that date -- meaning you can purchase a Vista Business machine and ask for XP to be installed instead -- who needs the extra hassle? (We note in passing that July 1 will also see tax rates increase on cars costing more than $57,123; go crazy, motoring freaks!)
Happy tax day, Americans! (Ugh.) If you haven't prepared your income tax return, all is not lost—you can file this form to get a six month extension, and take care of it when more accountants are less booked. See also what happened when we pit a human accountant versus TurboTax on our very own return.
It's that dreaded time of the year again, when that teetering pile of W-2 and 1099 forms haunt your dreams, and the perennial question gnaws at you: "Should I do my taxes myself, or hire an accountant?" A poll here on Lifehacker last month shows that most of you complete your income tax returns using software like TurboTax. In the past few years, I've gone back and forth between using an expensive human accountant and TurboTax.com to file my tax return. This year I decided to do both and see which solution saved me the most money and heartache. Read on to see who comes out victorious in the battle of the human tax accountant versus TurboTax.com.
Finance blogger Nickel tracks receipts and other scraps of tax-related paperwork throughout the year in two places: a basket at home, and an envelope in the car. Any time a business or medical expense comes up, in the basket or envelope the receipt goes. Same goes for charitable contributions. Every once in a while, Nickel transfers the contents of the envelope on-the-go to the basket. (Once that's done, you can easily digitise that paperwork with the right scanner.) How do you capture receipts and other tax documents as you go? Let us know in the comments.Keeping Track of Your Tax Paperwork
Even if you do all your banking online, there's still one ugly time of year when you've got to deal with a pile of financial paperwork, and that's tax time. If your accountant accepts forms via email, or you just want to save tax documents on your computer, you want a quick and easy way to do it. While most scanner workflows require several steps to digitise documents, the Fujitsu ScanSnap transforms paper into PDF with a single button press. No one wants to spend more time than they have to on receipts, 1099's and W-2's. Let's take a look at how to instantly capture tax-related and other important paperwork to your hard drive on April 15th and throughout the year with the ScanSnap.
US-centric: Thanks to the economic stimulus package President Bush just signed into law, eligible U.S. taxpayers will receive a tax rebate—and the Consumerism Commentary blog put together a handy calculator to figure out exactly how much. Plug your income and other tax info from your 2007 return into the calculator and get back the rebate amount (if you qualify). Apparently this rebate doesn't affect your 2007 taxes; instead you'll get it this coming summer 2008.Economic Stimulus Tax Rebate Calculator