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  • Specific questions and answers

    Question 1. Will the provision of first-aid kits and books issued as part of a first-aid course be considered GST-free?

    Non-interpretative – straight application of the law

    First aid or life saving courses are included in the definition of an 'education course' and are therefore GST-free. Course materials (photocopied education materials, art supplies or ingredients in a cooking class) that are consumed or transformed in an 'education course' would be GST-free.

    First-aid kits and books that are issued as part of the course will be subject to GST. Supplies of kits and books are taxable supplies for GST purposes and consequently GST should be remitted on the portion of the course fee that relates to the supply of those items.

    Question 2. To what extent will the provision of life saving courses other than resuscitation courses be considered GST-free? For example, the instruction of people in the use and manoeuvring of inflatable rubber boats?

    Non-interpretative – straight application of the law

    If the instruction of people to use inflatable rubber boats was part of an overall life-saving course as stated in the legislation then this aspect of the course would be part of a course that is GST-free. If this type of instruction was separate to the life-saving course then it would not be an education course and would be taxable.

    Question 3. How will 'life education' courses that are conducted in primary and secondary schools be treated with respect to GST. Life education exists as a complementary health and drug education resource for schools. Clarification is sought as to:

    • whether the course would be considered GST-free?
    • how a market value can be established for these types of services?

    Non-interpretative – straight application of the law

    A supply of an education course is GST-free. The ATO has issued GSTR 2000/30 – Goods and services tax: supplies that are GST-free for pre-school, primary and secondary education courses and GSTR 2001/1 – Goods and services tax: supplies that are GST-free for tertiary education courses. Both mention what constitutes an education course for the purposes of GST.

    All recognised preschool, primary school, secondary school and tertiary courses are GST-free. All courses covered by the determination of education courses under the Student Assistance Act 1973 are GST-free. The determination also covers secondary and tertiary courses provided they are accredited with the relevant State or Territory accreditation authority and are not considered to be 'hobby' course.

    The Education Minister may determine that any primary, secondary or tertiary course not covered by the determination is a GST-free course.

    Where a course is not an education course that is GST-free under Subdivision 38-C, the supply of the course may still be GST-free under Subdivision 38-G. This will be the case where an endorsed charity, a gift deductible entity or a government school makes a supply, other than a supply of accommodation, for consideration for less than 50% of the GST inclusive market value or less than 75% of the cost of making the supply.

    Question 4. How will GST apply to a neighbourhood centre when it offers low cost courses/programs aiming to create opportunities for socialisation, development of life skills, or aim to increase active participation in community life or increase health etc?

    Non-interpretative – straight application of the law

    Some of these courses are facilitated by volunteers, others by professionals visiting from another organisation. In all cases the neighbourhood centre will bear the cost of administering bookings, promotion, venue maintenance, insurance, utilities etc., and usually the cost of purchasing and maintaining equipment.

    Goods and services, other than a supply of accommodation, supplied by a charity (if registered for GST) are GST-free if the consideration for the supply is less than 50% of the GST inclusive market value or less than 75% of the cost of supply. Where the supplies are GST-free or taxable the charity is entitled to full input tax credits for all their acquisitions that relate to these supplies, including all the administration costs mentioned above.

    Question 5. A Child Care Rebate (CCR) is paid by Services Australia to a childcare service or directly to a parents bank account. Parents pay their portion of the childcare direct to carers. Will the parent levy attract GST?

    Non-interpretative – straight application of the law

    A supply of child care will be GST-free under Division 38-D if these services are provided at an approved child care service or if the child care provider is a registered carer for the purposes of the Child Care Rebate. Provided the childcare qualifies, the supply is GST-free irrespective of whether the payment is from Child Care Assistance or the parents.

      Last modified: 21 Dec 2020QC 27139