• Managing payments

    Read our tips on how to manage your payments:

    See also:

    Budgeting for tax

    Always keep an adequate amount aside to cover tax when you receive a payment that hasn't been taxed, such as:

    • income as a contractor
    • profit from selling shares or property (capital gains tax may apply)
    • rental income
    • share dividends.

    You can use our Income tax estimator to estimate whether you're likely to owe tax for this income year.

    See also:

    Make a tax pre-payment

    A tax pre-payment is a payment you make in advance of an expected tax bill. You can make pre-payments at any time and as often as you like to make it easier for you to manage your tax. All you need to do is:

    1. get your payment reference number (PRN)
    2. estimate the amount of tax to pay using our online tools and calculators
    3. make a tax pre-payment using any payment method.

    Any payments made towards your tax before they are due will remain on your account unless you, or your agent, request a refund.

    If you have an existing tax debt, pre-payments may be used to offset against it.

    Certain tax liabilities qualify for early payment interest when your payment is made more than 14 days before the due date. If you are eligible for interest on early payments, you can calculate how much you should receive using the credit for interest on our early payments calculator.

    See also:

    Request a payment transfer

    A payment transfer is the movement of a payment from one ATO account to another ATO account if a payment has been credited to the wrong account. You can request a partial transfer where a payment should have been made for two different accounts.

    You need to provide the following details to request a payment transfer:

    • your contact details, including your name and phone number (you must pass proof of identity on the account that the payment is being transferred from)
    • details of the account that the payment was made to, including the PRN, account name, TFN or ABN
    • amount of the payment
    • payment method for example, credit card or BPAY
    • date of the payment
    • payment receipt number (if known)
    • tax type, for example income or activity statement
    • details of the account that the payment is to be transferred to including the PRN, account name, TFN or ABN
    • details of the amount of the payment that is to be transferred (because you can request a transfer of the whole or partial amount of the payment).

    You can request a payment transfer by phoning 1800 815 886, 8.00am–6.00pm, Monday to Friday.

    Businesses can use the Business portalExternal Link and registered agents can use the Tax Agent PortalExternal Link.

    How to prevent tax debt

    Good record keeping and managing cash flow are the keys to avoiding debt. Our research shows that businesses are more likely to avoid falling into debt if they:

    • keep their GST and income tax payments separate from their other finances
    • manage their cash flow and can predict monthly income and expenses
    • update their business records frequently.

    It's also important to have a good understanding of your tax obligations so you can plan ahead to pay the right amount at the right time.

    Last modified: 14 Feb 2017QC 50464