Professional footballers – general tax guide

To help you manage your tax affairs, we have identified a range of topics to assist you to understand your tax obligations and superannuation entitlements. We have also included links to more information and support from us throughout the guide.

This guide explains:

When we say 'you' or 'professional footballer', we are referring to a person who makes their living by playing football, such as rugby league, rugby union, soccer and Australian rules.

Note: This guide does not deal with the tax obligations of support staff, coaches, referees or umpires.


To understand your tax situation, you must first work out whether you are an Australian resident for tax purposes.

Australian residents are generally taxed on their worldwide income, and foreign residents are generally taxed only on their Australian-sourced income.

Note: The residency tests we use to work out your residency status for tax purposes are not the same as those used by other Australian agencies for other purposes, such as immigration.

Generally, you are an Australian resident for tax purposes if any of the following applies:

  • you have always lived in Australia
  • you moved to Australia and live here permanently
  • you have been in Australia continuously for six months or more, and for most of the time you have been in the same job, and living in the same place
  • you have been in Australia for more than half of the income year, unless your usual home is overseas, and you do not intend to live in Australia.

Note: This guide only provides information if you are an Australian resident for tax purposes.

See also:

    Last modified: 06 Oct 2016QC 36159