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  • Requirements once you are registered

    Once you are registered for GST, you will need to:

    • include GST in the price of low value imported goods
    • meet reporting, payment and record-keeping requirements
    • ensure the required information is provided to customers and included on customs documents.

    Find out about:

    GST-inclusive pricing

    The GST rate in Australia is currently 10% this means the GST is 1/11th of the amount you charge for sales of low value goods imported by consumers will be the GST amount that you must pay. However, if you are a re-deliverer, special rules apply.

    As soon are you are aware Australian GST is likely to apply to the sale of goods, Australian consumer law requires that you display a GST-inclusive price.

    If you are unsure whether Australian GST will apply, you can display a message about the potential for additional taxes to apply. As soon as it is clear that GST applies, you must show the GST-inclusive price.

    These requirements are the same regardless of whether the price is in Australian dollars or another currency.

    GST does not apply to sales of low value imported goods made to Australian GST-registered businesses who are making the purchase for business use.

    You will need to determine whether you are selling to an Australian consumer or a GST-registered business.

    The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission administers the Australian consumer law. To find out more or contact them, visit accc.gov.auExternal Link

    See also:

    • Sales of low value imported goods to Australian GST-registered businesses

    GST returns

    You lodge and submit GST returns based on which registration system you use. You can do this yourself or use an agent to register and account for Australian GST.

    Simplified system

    Under the Simplified GST System, you submit returns and pay your GST quarterly.

    Table: payment and lodgment dates under the Simplified GST system

    Quarter

    Payment and lodgment date

    September quarter: 1 July to 30 September

    28 October

    December quarter: 1 October to 31 December

    28 February

    March quarter: 1 January to 31 March

    28 April

    June quarter: 1 April to 30 June

    28 July

    Standard GST system

    Under the standard GST registration, the due date for submitting and paying is displayed on your business activity statement (BAS). If the due date is on a weekend or public holiday, you can lodge your form and pay on the next business day.

    See also:

    Keeping records

    You need to keep:

    • accurate records of your Australian supplies
    • GST records for 5 years.

    See also:

    Paying

    You must report and pay in Australian dollars.

    Make sure you include the unique payment reference number (PRN) in the reference field every time you make a payment. This ensures your money goes to the right account without delay.

    Credit card

    To pay with credit card you will need:

    A card payment fee will apply.

    Transfer from an overseas bank account (SWIFT)

    Ask your overseas financial institution for advice on how to pay through SWIFT.

    Next step:

    Payment reference number (PRN)

    Your payment reference number (PRN) is your unique reference that ensures your payment is credited to the correct account. A PRN can also be called an EFT code.

    Due dates

    You must pay by the due date.

    If you are registered under the:

    • Simplified GST System for Non-residents, your payment is due on the 28th day of the month following the end of each quarter
    • Standard GST registration, see Lodging your GST return

    Convert to Australian dollars to pay GST

    You must convert to Australian dollars to pay your GST to the ATO.

    1. Use one of the following rates consistently:

    2. Convert on any of the following:

    • the earlier of (or either of the following if you account for GST on a cash basis)  
      • the day any of the payment is received for a sale
      • the transaction or invoice date
    • the final day of your tax period, for all sales on which GST is payable during the period, if you are registered under the Simplified GST system.

    We propose to make a determination that if you have standard GST registration, you could also convert on the final day of your tax period for your supplies that are either low value imported goods (or inbound intangible consumer supplies).

    See also:

    • Consultation on our proposed administration of the GST on low value imported goods measure
    • For an explanation of these terms see GSTR 2001/2 Goods and Services Tax: foreign exchange conversions

    Receipts issued to customers

    When you charge GST on a sale of low value imported goods you must issue a receipt to the customer.

    We propose that the receipt must include the following information:

    • your name
    • your GST registration number, which is either your ATO Reference Number (ARN) or Australian business number (ABN)
    • the date of issue
    • a description of what you supplied, including the quantity (if applicable) and the price
    • the amount of GST payable
    • information that identifies whether GST was charged on the goods
      • if you charged GST on all the goods, you can include the GST-inclusive price and state that this price includes GST (alternatively, you can include the GST for each item)
      • if GST was not charged on some of the goods, the receipt must show which goods were subject to GST.

    If the total price of the transaction is over A$1,000, you also need to include the name of the customer. This could occur if you sell multiple low value goods and have not applied the exception for multiple goods that total over A$1,000.

    You are not required to issue a tax invoice or adjustment note to your customers. If you choose to issue a tax invoice (which you can only do if you have an ABN), this will have all of the required information.

    However, you should not charge GST or issue a tax invoice with an amount of GST payable if the sale is made to a customer who is not a consumer. This is because you have obtained their ABN and information or a statement that they are registered for GST).

    See also:

    Requirements for customs documents

    You must ensure that the relevant tax information is included in the customs documents (such as a self-assessed clearance or import declaration) for goods if you are registered for GST and you are either:

    • responsible for GST as the merchant who sells low value imported goods
    • an electronic distribution platform operator or re-deliverer who is treated as the supplier of low value imported goods.

    You do this by:

    • including the relevant information on the commercial documents, and
    • requesting that this information is included by the customs broker or transporter who completes the customs documents on behalf of the importer.

    If you are an electronic distribution platform operator, you will need to ensure that the merchant does this on your behalf.

    This requirement applies for each supply where you:

    The tax information you must ensure is included is:

    • your GST registration number (this is either your ARN or ABN)
    • the customer's ABN (if you have it)
    • whether GST was charged on the goods

    The receipt you issue to customers must contain all of the information needed to fill in the customs documents when GST applies to the sale.

    Penalties may apply if you fail to take reasonable steps to ensure that the relevant tax information is included in the customs documents.

    See also:

    Returned goods

    If a customer is provided with a refund for goods that are returned and you have already paid GST to the ATO, you can make an adjustment to reduce the amount of GST payable in your next return.

    Fixing mistakes

    Make sure you correct mistakes straight away.

    For example, you may later find that you have incorrectly charged GST on a sale of goods that are not low value goods or to a customer that is not a consumer

    If you incorrectly charged GST, you are not entitled to a GST refund from the ATO unless you have reimbursed the customer for GST on the sale. When you have reimbursed the customer, you can make an adjustment to reduce the amount of GST payable in your next GST return.

    See also:

    Last modified: 13 Mar 2018QC 52556