Tax tips for students

@JCU Tax tips for students

The ATO is helping you take control of your future

There is no better time than the present to take control of your future. This Youth Week (8-17 April), think about how you can manage your finances so you can reap the rewards later. Thankfully, the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) makes doing this easy with a bunch of online services available.

Top three tips from the ATO to get your finances on track:

1. Get a TFN

Your tax file number (TFN) is your personal reference number in the tax and super systems. You will need a TFN when you start working and to get access to the ATO’s online services. If you haven’t already applied for a TFN you can apply for one at a participating Australia Post retail outlet or an ATO shopfront. To find out more about how to apply for a TFN, visit

2. Register for myGov and link to the ATO

myGov is a fast and simple way to access government services online, including the ATO. It is a one stop shop for everything relating to your tax and super. Once you’ve linked your myGov account to the ATO, you can:

  • Lodge your tax return
  • Check the progress of your tax return
  • Manage your superannuation
  • View your Higher education loan programme (HELP) or Trade support loans (TSL) account balances
  • Make a payment or create a payment plan
  • View and update your contact details.

To find out more about the ATO’s online services, and to register with myGov, visit

3. Download the ATO app

  • The ATO app has a tonne of features to help get your finances sorted. Download it today so you can:
  • Access online services, including myTax, to lodge your tax returns.
  • Keep track of your work-related expenses all in one place using the myDeductions tool. Instead of keeping track of all those tiny receipts you’ve squished into your wallet, you simply take a photo of the receipt and myDeductions stores it safely for you till you need to lodge your tax return.
  • Enrol and use your voiceprint for fast, easy and secure access to online services, then use your voice to verify your identity the next time you use the app or phone the ATO.
  • Search for any lost super you might have.

Download the app for free from Google Play, Windows Phone Store or the Apple App Store.

For more information about all the online tools the ATO has on offer go to

Repaying HELP loans from overseas

Have you moved overseas since graduating? Living overseas doesn’t mean you wave goodbye to your Higher Education Loan Program (HELP) repayments. If you have a debt you now have the same repayment obligations no matter where you choose to live and work.

If you live overseas, you need to notify the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) of your international contact details in their online services via myGov by 1 July 2017. Keeping your details up to date is the best way to stay on top of your loan repayments.

Most people make loan repayments once their income is above the minimum repayment threshold. From July 2017 HELP debtors living and working overseas will have to report their worldwide income to the ATO and make compulsory repayments if their income is above the repayment threshold just like they would if they were living in Australia.

“For now, all travellers with a HELP debt need to do is update their details and factor in potentially making compulsory repayments from 1 July 2017.” said Graham Whyte, an ATO Assistant Commissioner looking after individuals.

The ATO makes it easy to do the right thing. You can view, manage and pay your HELP debt online by linking your myGov account to the ATO. You can also make voluntary repayments at any time to reduce the balance of your debt.

More information about overseas repayments can be found on the ATO website

Kick start your career with the ATO’s 2017 Graduate Program

Have you almost finished uni or have recently graduated? Kick start your career with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), an innovative and world-leading revenue and superannuation administrator. Applications for the ATO’s 2017 Graduate Program are now open.

Listed on The Australian’s Top 100 Graduate Employers in 2016, the ATO’s 12-month graduate program gives enthusiastic and energetic thinkers the opportunity to thrive in a dynamic and high profile national organisation. They’re looking for graduates like you who will help them continue being great at what they do.

The ATO is looking for graduates who are in the final year of their degree or have completed their university studies within 3 years at the time of their application, with a degree in:

  • Accounting and Commerce
  • Design
  • Economics
  • Finance
  • Human Resource Management
  • Information Technology
  • Law
  • Marketing and Communication
  • STEM and Statistics

The ATO offers you challenging work rotations, extensive training and development opportunities, dedicated support from management, and countless networking opportunities with current and former graduates. You will also be rewarded with a starting salary of around $58,000 and flexible work arrangements.

On completion of the graduate program, graduates are guaranteed an ongoing role at the ATO in their discipline, are paid over $64,000, will advance to a higher classification, and continue to receive a wide range of employee benefits.

The ATO is hiring in:

  • Adelaide
  • Albury
  • Brisbane
  • Canberra
  • Gosford
  • Hobart
  • Melbourne
  • Newcastle
  • Perth
  • Sydney
  • Townsville
  • Wollongong

Applications for the ATO’s 2017 Graduate Program close 20 April 2016.

The ATO will be holding a Q&A session on 7 April on Facebook, where ATO staff will be on hand to answer any questions about the program.

To find out more about the ATO’s Graduate Program, go to