Useful Information and FAQs on GST

Do I need to be registered for GST?

You must register for GST if you run a business or enterprise and your GST turnover is $75,000 or more ($150,000 or more for non-profit organisations). You only register once for GST, even if you operate more than one business. You must register within 21 days of reaching the threshold. You may also choose to register if your GST turnover is below the threshold.

If you provide taxi travel, you must register for GST regardless of your turnover.

What is my GST Turnover?

Your ‘GST Turnover’ is your gross business income excluding GST for either the 12 months leading up to the current month (current GST turnover) or the 12 months starting with the current month (projected GST turnover). If you’ve just started a new business and expect it to earn $75,000 or more in its first year of operation, register for GST.

How do I manage GST if I run more than one business?

Related entities may form a GST group and be treated as a single entity for GST purposes. An entity may separately register a branch for GST purposes if this suits its management and accounting structure.

What are the benefits of registering for GST before I need to?

Some businesses choose to register for GST before they are required to.  This can have its benefits.  You will be paying GST for most of your business purchases; by registering for GST you can then claim back the GST you have paid. If you have a lot of out of pocket expenses this can actually receive a rebate.

Some customers feel better dealing with a company that pays GST as they perceive them to be bigger and more reliable.

What are the disadvantages of registering for GST before I need to?

By registering for GST before you need to you are therefore required to submit quarterly BAS statements and pay back the difference in GST collected and paid.  This adds to your accounting costs as well as increasing your workload.

By registering for GST you are then required to add GST onto your products and services, therefore making them more expensive for customers to purchase.  If a homeowner was choosing a painter to paint their house and they both quote $10,000 for the job, the painter registered for GST would have to charge the customer $11,000 (passing on the 10% GST charge or taking a hit and paying it themselves).

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