Many of the biggest questions backpackers ask about concerns overpayments—income deductions that they may be able to lodge claims for. Here are some instances where you may have overpaid.
While highly unlikely, your income may have been deducted for the Medical Levy. If this happens, check with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) online or get advice from a tax expert on how to proceed. If it turns out that you overpaid taxes for the levy, there may be a chance you can lodge for a claim.
Superannuation Fund Deductions
While not an overpayment, technically, super fund deductions are mandatory and taken from your income. We’ve outlined the processes of lodging your super fund claims—on your own or with the help of dedicated tax agents. The key takeaway you need to start on your super fund claims before you leave Australia (or within six months after departing). Unclaimed super funds will be considered lost.
Income Deductions Based On Resident Status for Tax Purposes
This is no longer an issue; all backpackers and working holiday makers are recognized as non-residents for tax purposes and should only be deducted 15%. If, however, you think that deductions from your income have been overpaid due to your resident status, seek advice from a tax expert like pinkcow to know how you can proceed with lodging for claims.
When Your Employer Isn’t Registered with ATO
This can be a right pickle, as we’ve previously mentioned. But if your income has been deducted with the higher tax rate (32.5%), you have the option of having it adjusted once your returns have been lodged and the overpayment has been documented.
If you’re still employed, pinkcow can help you look up to see if your current employer is registered. Or, we provide assistance with lodging your claims if you have completed your work contract. Employers who fail to register backpackers that are under their employment may be slapped with penalties for doing so.
Remember: Tax season runs from 1 July to 31 October 2019. So before you head home or off to the beach, make sure to lodge your returns. If you have questions or would like more advice about lodging your tax returns and claims, click on this link—we may be able to help.