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Tax Refund Process

Income Tax Refunds

You are generally entitled to an income tax refund if your pay as you go (PAYG) instalments during the year exceed your income tax liability for that year.

Unless you operate as a company, your tax liability is worked out by us at the end of the income year when we assess your annual income tax return. Your PAYG instalments are then credited against your assessment to work out if you owe more tax or are owed a refund of some or all of the tax you have paid.

If you are owed a refund it will be paid at the same time as your tax assessment is issued.

Under the self-assessment system, companies and super funds assess their own income tax liability when they lodge their annual company tax return. The entity's PAYG instalments are credited against the total annual income tax it is liable to pay.

If the entity is owed a refund it will generally be paid to a nominated account soon after the annual company tax return is lodged.

Work it out

Progress of return enquiry tool (individuals and sole traders only)

This tool provides information about the tax returns of individuals only, not of companies, trusts or partnerships. It does not provide information about amendments to tax returns.

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When will you get your refund? (individuals and sole traders only)

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Sometimes you may not receive your refund, or the refund you receive may be less than you expected. This occurs because there are situations where we are entitled to retain part of, or all of, your refund.

For example, we may need to keep part or all of your refund to offset it against an amount you owe us, or we may have kept it because we need to check, or verify with you, some details shown on your return or activity statement.

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Where is my refund?

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Electronic funds transfer (EFT) refunds

Provide your Australian financial institution account (FIA) details in your return as we need this information to pay your refund directly into your nominated account.

EFT is the fastest and most secure way to receive your refund. EFT is convenient and ensures your refund is paid directly into your nominated bank, credit union or building society account. Alternatively, you can speak with your tax agent about using their trust account if they operate one.

You are required to provide your FIA details from 1 April 2014 for fringe benefits tax returns and 1 July 2014 for tax return lodgments, even if you have provided your details before. These requirements are already in place for individual tax return lodgments, having taken effect on 1 July 2013.

By making sure your FIA details are correct when you lodge, you will avoid potential delays in receiving your refund and ensure it does not go into someone else’s account.

We understand that some taxpayers may be unable to provide their FIA details. If this is the case, you can contact us to discuss your circumstances.

If your assessment results in an amount owing to the ATO, we will issue a notice of assessment that provides details on how you can pay, such as online using BPAY® or credit card. The ATO existing debt collection practices continue to apply.


Shand Business Solutions are registered BAS AGENTS.

We do not provide Accounting, Financial or TAX advice.

We do provide when requested, Accountant Ready Books for your own Accountant or Tax Agent.

If you don't have an accountant or a Tax Agent then we can arrange one for you.