Definition of a GST error

A GST error is a mistake you made in working out your GST net amount on your activity statement that would, if it was the only mistake that you made, result in you reporting or paying too much GST (credit error) or reporting or paying too little GST (debit error).

The error must relate to an amount of GST, GST credit or GST adjustment. A GST error does not include an error that relates to an amount of fuel tax credit, wine equalisation tax, or luxury car tax.

The GST error is the amount of GST, GST credit or GST adjustment and not the gross or GST-inclusive price of the transaction.

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GST definitions – GST credits

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Example 1: GST error only relates to the GST, GST credit or GST adjustment

In working out the GST net amount for the monthly reporting period ending 30 June 2013, Bronlynn inadvertently reported GST payable of $1,000 on a taxable sale, instead of $100. That is, the price of the taxable sale was $1,100 (GST-inclusive). The GST error is the overpaid GST (that is, $900), not the price of the taxable sales (that is, $1,100).

Example 2: GST error must be quantified

On 15 April 2013, Noodle Developments discovers it has not reported the GST on sales it made for the December 2012 quarterly activity statement lodged on 21 January 2013. However, it is unable to work out the amount and decides to engage an accounting firm to review its accounts.

On 18 July 2013, the accounting firm finalises the review for Noodle Developments and works out the amount of the unreported GST for the December 2012 quarter was $5,000. As the mistake has now been worked out, it is a GST error this guide might apply to.

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See What is not a GST error for information about what is not a GST error, including:

  • claiming a GST credit on a later activity statement
  • a GST adjustment
  • a GST restricted refund.
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    Last modified: 27 Aug 2015QC 16233