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New to tax and super

If you are new to the tax and superannuation system this information will help you start your tax and super journey.

Last updated 21 August 2023

Why we have tax

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) collects taxes for the Australian Government. The taxes we all pay fund community services, such as:

  • health care
  • education
  • roads and train lines
  • the Australian Defence Force
  • welfare and disaster relief.

Having the services we all value depends on everyone paying the right amount of tax.

Media: Village and the boy named tax Link (Duration: 02:55)

This animation was developed from a story by high school student Felicity Pollard.

Starting your first job

When you start working, you need to know if you are an employee or contractor, or starting your own business.

You may also need to:


When you start your first job this is usually when you make decisions to get started with super.

You can usually choose which super fund for your employer to make payments to, they will give you a Superannuation standard choice form.

The YourSuper comparison tool is a simple way to compare MySuper products and help you choose a super fund that meets your needs.

Regularly review your super account to ensure you are receiving super contribution payments from your employer.

Use the Super Health Check to regularly keep track and stay on top of your super. It is 5 simple and important things you can do to check the health of your super. Checking your super regularly is a good habit to start, allowing you to manage your super, understand your entitlements, and make better choices for when you retire.

Your income

If you have an employer they pay your salary or wage to you. They will also withhold any tax and send it to us. Your payslipsExternal Link will show how much tax is withheld.

Your taxable income is your assessable income minus any allowable deductions. Your taxable income is used to work out how much tax you need to pay.

Claiming the tax-free threshold

If you're an Australian resident, the first $18,200 you earn is tax-free, this is known as the tax-free threshold. You can claim the tax-free threshold on the TFN declaration you give your employer.

Access ATO online services

You can manage your tax and super in one place by using our online services.

You first need to create a myGov account and link it to the ATO.

Media: How to create a myGov account and link to the ATO Link (Duration: 03:57)

Access your income statement

At the end of the income year your employer will provide you with an end of year statement known as an income statement. Your income statement will show your tax and super information. You access your income statement through ATO online services.

Lodging your first tax return

The income year in Australia runs 1 July to 30 June.

When you lodge your tax return, we calculate how much tax you should pay on your income, less the amount your employer has already sent to us.

Media: How to lodge your tax return Link

A transcript of this video is available.

Claiming deductions

You can claim some of your expenses as deductions in your tax return.

Deductions reduce your taxable income, which in turn reduces the amount of tax you need to pay.

Protect your information

It's important to protect your personal information.


  • Keep your TFN safe – only give it to your employer and your tax agent (if you use one) and don’t let anyone else use it.
  • Don’t share your myGov or other online passwords with anyone.
  • Don't include your TFN, passwords or other sensitive information in emails.
  • Keep your ABN details, if you have one, up to date.

To report a scam or if you think something is a scam, contact us or visit Verify or report a scam.

Media: Protect your personal information Link (Duration: 01:34)

Help and support we provide

We have help and support available to help you meet your tax obligations, this includes:

  • ATO app – you can download the ATO app it's a simple and easy way to access and manage your tax and super on the go.
  • Our free Work Ready CourseExternal Link to help you to:
    • understand the meaning of tax and super, how they work and why they are important
    • develop the skills to become work-ready and successfully navigate Australia's tax and superannuation systems
    • understand the responsibilities of businesses in relation to tax and super.
  • ATO CommunityExternal Link – answers to questions about tax and super. For information you can rely on, look for answers marked 'ATO certified response'.
  • Our Tax Help program for people earning around $60,000 or less a year and need help completing your tax return, refund of franking credit, non-lodgment advice or amendment.

Authorised by the Australian Government, Canberra.