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Can I Claim the GST on That?

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Welcome to the “Can I Claim the GST on That?” page! This is a resource for business owners (or their bookkeepers/BAS Agents) who prepare their own accounts and BAS. More specifically,  it is a list of common business purchases and whether or not they are subject to GST. This list answers the question, “does this purchase include GST or not?”. It is to be used to assist in better accounts preparation and subsequent BAS preparation. We suggest that you bookmark this page for future reference. 

We hope you find this resource helpful. Please share it with fellow business owners or even your BAS Agent or bookkeeper. If there is an item or scenario missing from this list or one you would like to see included, please add it to the comments below. It would be great to make this a “live” resource that is updated regularly and therefore made more useful over time. Over to you!

ITEM

CLAIM THE GST?

YES & NO

NOTES

Apportioned expenses (home-based business)

Only claim GST on the business percentage your tax agent has worked out for you. For example, if your business percentage is 30%, then you can only claim 30% of the GST of the purchase.

ASIC filing fees

Fees associated with ASIC are not subject to GST

ASIC other fees

Fees associated with ASIC are not subject to GST

ATO general interest

GST free

Bad debts

Bank dishonoured cheque fee

GST free

Bank fees

GST free

Bank interest

GST free

Bank merchant fees

This includes American Express merchant fees

Business name registration

As with any ASIC charges, this is not subject to GST

Capital purchases

Child care fees

Not tax deductible, therefore GST not claimable

Client gifts

Commercial rent

Compression socks

Compression socks are only GST-free if they're specifically designed for people with an illness or disability, and not widely used by people without an illness or disability.

GST applies to compression socks when they’re designed for, or widely used by, people in the general community to: prevent illness or disability, or prevent legs and feet from getting tired or swollen from prolonged standing. This will include products such as travel socks, general-purpose compression socks, sports or athletic compression socks and maternity socks.

Council rates

Generally no, but if your landlord is registered for GST, he may charge GST on these rates

Credit card repayments

GST exempt

Credit card surcharge

The surcharge is considered to be form part of the supply of goods and services.

Depreciation

GST exempt

Digital subscriptions

Digital Currency

If you use digital currency to pay for goods and services or accept it as payment in your GST-registered business, it’s just like using money and the normal GST rules apply. You must report your sales & purchases on your BAS.

Director fees

Directors' fees are compensation paid for services performed as a company director. They can take the form of salary, fees and dividends.

Dogs ? ? ?

No, if the dog is a pet; Yes if the dog is used in the running of business such as a guard dog or a working dog used to muster stock.

Domain name renewal

Yes generally, but not if the supplier is based overseas.

Donations

No GST claimable and for it to be tax deductible, the organisation you donated to must have the status of Deductible Gift Recipient.

Driver's Licence

Not tax deductible, therefore GST not claimable

Ebay fees

GST free

Education general

All recognised pre, primary, secondary and tertiary courses are GST free.

Educational/training courses for your business

Generally yes if the tax invoice indicates that GST has been charged, however there are exceptions so always check the tax invoice first.

Electricity and/or gas

Yes, to the extent of your business usage percentage.

Entertainment

If your business has elected to use the 50/50 split method for FBT, only claim 50% GST on all purchases

Export of Goods for consumption and use outside of Australia

Under section 38-190, a supply of a service is GST-free if the:

recipient of the service is outside Australia, and
use and enjoyment of the service is outside of Australia.

Eyewear ?️ ?

Reading glasses - no! Protective-wear like sunglasses or safety glasses, yes!

Food & drinks

To check if a food or drink item attracts GST or not, see this detailed list from the ATO.

To work out if food or drink is taxable or GST-free, use this flow chart created by the ATO - very useful! https://bit.ly/3ZuXvcp

Gift cards

GST free

Going concern

Haircuts and makeup

Not tax deductible, therefore GST not claimable

Health & medical services, aids & appliances

Most medical-related supplies are GST free. However, to check if GST applies, see this ATO guide.

Insurance

The premium, broker fees and administrative fees include GST. Stamp duty is exempt.

Insurance excess

No, if you are paying the excess directly to the insurer. Yes, if you are paying the excess to someone other than your insurer. Note, this party must not be acting as an agent for the insurer and you must receive a tax invoice.

Internet

Yes, to the extent of your business usage percentage.

Land tax

GST exempt

Legal fees

Yes, if the supplier is registered for GST.

Loan repayments

Remember, you can only claim GST on the purchase of the item at the time of the purchase. You cannot claim GST in each loan repayment related to the original purchase!

Loans

Loans are financial supplies, therefore GST does not apply. They are input taxed.

Meals at a restaurant/cafe

Yes if employees or associates but not claimable for clients. See the ATO entertainment table.

Meals while you are travelling

Yes, but not for clients. See the ATO entertainment table.

Mobile phone monthly charges

Yes, to the extent of your business usage percentage.

Mobile phone prepaid recharge cost

No, not subject to GST. Only the individual calls, SMS and data are subject to GST.

Mortgagees in possession

Motor Vehicle Registration

Not on the registration fee, but claimable on the TAC charge (Victoria). See here for how charges apply in other states.

Motor Vehicle Purchase

If you use a motor vehicle solely in carrying on your business and you're registered for GST, you’re generally entitled to claim a credit for the GST included in the price of the vehicle, provided you have a tax invoice. There are rules for luxury car purchases, leased vehicles and purchasing second-hand.

Motor Vehicle Sale

You need to account for GST when you dispose of a motor vehicle if the disposal is a taxable sale. There are rules for luxury cars, trade-ins, disposal to an associate and disposal by a charity.

Payments to overseas suppliers

Generally not but this depends on whether the supplier is required to be registered for GST e.g. Google.The policy underlying GST is that it is intended to be a tax on consumption in Australia and therefore, goods and services which are not consumed in Australia should not be subject to GST.

PayPal fees

GST free

Postage

Yes, for postage within Australia but no, if the fee is for postage outside of Australia.

Private health insurance

GST exempt

Private purchases and/or loans

GST exempt

Property - Commercial

Yes, if you sell shops, factories, or offices. No, if you are selling the property as part of a GST-free sale of a going concern. You may be able to treat the sale as a GST-free supply of going concern if the property is being leased at the time of sale.

Purchase that is both for private & business use

Only claim GST on the business use portion.

Reimburse Employees

You may be entitled to claim GST input tax credits for payments you've made to reimburse employees for a taxable expense that's directly related to your business activities.

Residential rent & expenses

Secondhand goods sold by a charity

In general these will be GST free, however, if the goods have been altered in any way prior to sale, then GST applies.

Stamp duty

GST exempt

Storage fees

Stripe fees

Superannuation

GST exempt

Suppliers not registered for GST

Definitely not! But if you need to check if a supplier is registered for GST, go the ABN Lookup site. We recommend that this is done for all new suppliers in your business.

Tax payments

GST exempt

Traffic fines

Not tax deductible, therefore GST not claimable

Travel - flights, accommodation, taxi, parking

Yes, to the extent that the travel is related to your business activities.

Uniforms

Vouchers

GST is only claimed when the voucher is redeemed. The voucher purchase itself is GST free

Wages & payroll payments

GST exempt

Waste disposal

Water rates

GST free

Website hosting

Yes generally, but not if the supplier is based overseas.

Work clothing

Workcover insurance

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