Understanding and registering for taxes
There are a number of taxes that you may be required to register for. Understand the different types of taxations that may apply to your business, and how to register below:
- Register for a Tax file number (TFN)
- Register for Goods and Services Tax (GST)
- Register for Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT)
- Register for Pay As You Go PAYG withholding
- Register for Pay as you go (PAYG) instalments
- Register for Payroll Tax
Other taxes you need to understand include:
Seek advice from your accountant or visit Advisory Services to find a business advisor in your area. See our Registration and licences topic for information on other registration types such as registering for an ABN or ACN.
Paying your taxes
Paying your tax online is a fast, convenient and secure way to do business. The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) offers a range of online services to make compliance easier. To ensure that your privacy is protected you need an AUSkey to access most of these services.
If you have an AUSkey, then these online services are available to you:
- lodge monthly, quarterly or annual activity statements
- update your Australian Business Number (ABN) details
- lodge Pay As You Go (PAYG) summary reports
- lodge excise fuel grants schemes claims
- lodge superannuation statements and reports
- submit and access temporary residents' online applications.
If you're a sole trader and you have a myGov account linked to the ATO, you'll also be able to log in to the ATO’s online services for individuals to:
- lodge, view and revise activity statements
- manage your Pay As You Go (PAYG) instalments.
You can also apply online for an ABN, Goods and Services Tax (GST), PAYG withholding and a business Tax File Number (TFN) through the Australian Business Register.
Tax can also be paid electronically by BPAY, direct credit or direct debit. You can also make mail payments or Australian Post Office payments.
Record keeping and taxation
Good business records help you manage your business and make sound business decisions. Business records are also useful if you want to sell your business.
Under tax law, you must keep records to record and explain your business transactions. You're required to keep records relating to income tax, Goods and Services Tax (GST), payments to employees and business payments.
You can keep your records on paper or electronically. A variety of electronic record keeping packages are available.
- Read the Australian Taxation Office's Manage your invoices, payments and records page about paper and electronic record keeping and reporting.
- Visit our Finance topic for information on setting up a bookkeeping system.
- Use the Record keeping evaluation tool to decide what records you need to keep.
- Visit The Treasury's Standard Business Reporting (SBR) website to find out how registering for SBR can save you time and money.
What to do...
- Read the ATO's Starting your own business topic to help you understand your tax obligations and entitlements.
- For online payments, go to the ATO's Online services page.
- Find out about the free tax support the ATO provides.
- See the Business Portal essentials for how to register for an AUSkey.
- For other ways to pay, go to the Making payments to the ATO page.
- Go to the Australian Business Register to apply for an ABN, GST, PAYG and a business TFN.