Goods & Services Tax (GST) Explained
The Federal Government levies a multi-stage sales tax of 10% on the supply of most goods and services by entities registered for Goods and Services Tax (GST). This tax system was introduced in Australia on 1 July 2000 by the then Howard Liberal government. A number of supplies are GST-free (eg, many basic foodstuffs, medical and educational services, exports), input-taxed (residential accommodation, financial services, etc), exempt (Government charges) or outside the scope of GST.
The revenue from this tax is distributed to the States.
State governments do not levy any sales taxes though they do impose stamp duties on a range of transactions.
In summary, the GST rate of 10% will be charged on most goods and services consumed in Australia. If you are registered for GST, you need to include GST in the price you charge your customers for goods and services they purchase from you (called sales). However, you will be able to claim a credit for the GST you have paid on your business expenses and other inputs (called a GST credit). You have to pay the difference between GST charged on sales and GST credits to the Tax Office periodically.
There are two types of sales which will be treated differently:
- Suppliers of GST-free goods and services will not have to pay GST when they make a sale but they will be entitled to GST credits.
- Suppliers of input taxed goods and services do not have to charge GST on sales but they will not be entitled to claim GST credits from their purchases of inputs.
who should charge GST?
If you run a business or other enterprise and have a GST turnover of $75,000 or more ($150,000 or more for non-profit organisations), or you provide taxi travel (including ride-sourcing) – you need to:
- register for GST
- work out whether your sales are taxable (that is, subject to GST, and not exempted because they are GST-free or input-taxed) and include GST in the price of your taxable sales
- issue tax invoices for your taxable sales and obtain tax invoices for your business purchases
- claim GST credits for GST included in the price of your business purchases
- account for GST on either a cash or non-cash basis and put aside the GST you collected so you can pay it to us when due
- lodge activity statements or annual returns to report your sales and purchases, and pay GST to us or receive a GST refund.
How we can help
As a client of TWR Group you’ll benefit from our integrated services model. We’ll listen closely to your needs and bring together the relevant professionals across a number of specialities and locations; providing a responsive, personalised solution.
Bringing our services together in a truly integrated manner ensures that you receive the right advice at the right time and derive long-term value from your relationship with us.