As the end of the year approaches, a significant proportion of personal tax returns have been completed and the ATO released data on those assessed by the ATO so far. While not a surprise to us, the data confirmed what has been a nasty shock for many clients that their refunds have reduced significantly this year.
The ATO’s data shows the average refund has dropped by $580 this year. There are two main reasons for this drop:
- The removal of the middle income tax offset which provided taxpayers with certain income a benefit of $1,500; and
- The tightening of the home office rules. Although a fixed rate method is still in place, the documentation required is tougher and using this method removes many other claims (such as mobile, internet) that taxpayers were claiming as the fixed rate covers all these costs.
Of course, the best way to ensure your return is done correctly and your refund is maximised is to get your return completed by a qualified tax agent and ensure you keep all your receipts throughout the year. If you need assistance with your return, please do not hesitate to contact us.