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June 2, 2021

First Time Tax Return

Tax return forms are loaded in or against your favor. Either way, they’re mandatory. The main purpose of completing a tax return is to let the state know about your income, spendings, and possible deductions. Based on the info you provide, the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) will conclude whether you need to pay extra tax or get a tax refund.

As simple as it may sound in theory, it can be rather complicated in nature. Many people struggle with their first-time tax return, but we’ll pick up the slack and explain how to do it in an instant!

First Time Tax Return - Explained

Completing and submitting a tax return can be a tedious task to say the least. If it’s your first time lodging, make sure you understand the general requirements. According to the ATO, you are obligated to submit a tax return by law if:

● The Commissioner has explicitly required you to submit a return

● You own a business (regardless of your overall income or loss)

● Your total accessible income is higher than the $18,200 tax-free threshold

● You earn less than $18,200, but your tax has been withheld from the total income

● You paid Pay As You Go Installment Tax last year, regardless of your income (in case your goal is to recover the tax)

● You’re a minor whose primary income comes from dividends or distributions that exceed the sum of $416 where franking credits were applied and/or tax was withheld

The deadline for lodging a tax return is after July 1st and before October 31st. If for any reason you can’t submit the tax return within this time frame, you can forward a written notice to the Commission before October 31st and ask for an extension.

Are Minors, Part-Time Workers, and Apprentices Required to Lodge?

Yes, all employed people have to submit their tax return forms. You have to declare all salaries, wages, allowances, and bonuses you receive as a teen, part-time, or apprentice worker as assessable income.

What is a Tax-Free Threshold?

The first $18,200 of your yearly income is known as the tax-free threshold. You aren’t required to pay tax on this sum, but rather you can use it to reduce the tax that’s been withheld from your pay over the course of one year.

If your taxable income is higher than $18,200, the ATO demands that you pay tax on all your earnings above this sum. In case you have more than one job, it’s advised you claim the tax-free threshold from the employer that pays you a higher wage.

How Can I Submit A Tax Return Form?

The moment you become employed, your employer should issue you an individual tax file number. If they don’t, you can apply for one by contacting the ATO. The tax file number is unique for every person, and it is valid for life.

You should never share your tax number with anyone else, other than your employer, your bank, your tax agent (if you have one), and the ATO.

When lodging your return form, make sure you bring all documentation needed. To ensure you don’t forget anything, we’ve made the table below to serve as a reminder.

Income Offsets and Refunds Deduction (work-related experince) Other Income
  • Payment summaries
  • Income statements
  • Interest income from banks and building societies
  • Lump-sum and termination payment summaries
  • Divident statements for dividends you recieved or reinvested
  • Annual tax statements from managed funds
  • Health insurance
  • Rebate entitlement statement
  • IAS statement (or PAYG instalments paid)
  • Spouse deatils (taxabe and exempt income)
  • Motor vehicle
  • uniforms 
  • Travel expenses
  • Professional development 9courses, seminars, etc..)
  • Home office
  • Telephone, Pc, Internet
  • Subscriptions, memberships
  • Donations
  • Income protection insurance
  • Rental properties
  • Forein income
  • Capital gains
  • Employee share schemes


If you’re eligible for a tax refund, you should prepare your bank account details as well.

You can complete the tax return form online or on paper. But, these forms can be quite confusing, especially if it’s your first time lodging.

Luckily, CAPTaxation is ready to take the weight off your shoulders and submit the tax return form in your stead! Even if you miss the tax return deadline, you can contact us and talk to our tax agent, who’ll contact ATO on your behalf and sort out the issue.

What Deductions Can I Claim?

Work-related expenses are the most common type of deductible costs. Among others, employees usually ask to claim a deduction on:

● Transport and travel expenses

● Uniforms

● Laundry and dry-cleaning

● Expenses related to working from a home office

● Self-education and professional improvement expenses

● Tools and equipment

Additionally, you may claim a deduction for:

● Gifts and donations

● Personal contributions

● Cost for tax affair management

● ATO interest

● Income protection insurance

Request Tax Return the Simple Way With CAP Taxation

At CAPTaxation,we strive to simplify complicated tax return forms. With over 20 years of experience, we offer to do for you what we did for thousands of clients - ensure they get what’s rightfully theirs, hassle-free!