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Tax Return Lodgment Due Dates

The general deadline for the lodgement of self-prepared individual, partnership and trust income tax returns is 31 October.

In general, where the due date falls on a weekend or public holiday, it is moved to the next business day.

If an extension of time is needed to lodge a tax return, the Tax Office should be contacted before the due date with the reasons. If granted, an extension will avoid (or depending on circumstances, reduce) late lodgement penalties.

For Tax office mailing addresses and other queries – see the information here.

Company and Super Fund Lodgment Due Dates

Company and SMSF tax return due lodgment dates depend on a number of factors.

Lodgment dates are broadly categorised according to risk (prior lodgement record) and revenue (tax payable and size) factors.

The below information is a general guide, but regardless of that, as a starting point you should check the due date shown by the Tax Office in the online portal (https://onlineservices.ato.gov.au/) and contact the Tax Office or your tax agent if any variation of that is required.

Regardless of any general guidelines, the tax office can request lodgment by a specified date should they have a reason.

  • small companies are generally due by 28 February (lodgment and payment)
  • companies with prior year returns outstanding or prosecutions are required by 31 October (payment by 1 December)
  • large or medium and previous year low-taxed companies, consolidated group companies are required variously from December through March – See Companies and super funds
  • non-taxable entities may have until 15 May as their final lodgment date (generally extendible without penalty to 5 June, beyond which restricted dates apply in the following year).
  • See Tax returns by client type – Companies and super funds
  • first return SMSF funds and previously late lodgers need to lodge by 31 October, but otherwise will generally need to lodge by 28 February, or a later date if handled by a tax agent.
  • As an enforcement measure, SMSFs with obligations more than 2 weeks overdue will have their rollover and super guarantee functionality suspended until they catch up.

COVID-19 and Disaster Support

The Tax Office has provided flexibility in order to assist those affected by circumstances.

Currently available support measures for various groups are detailed here.

Natural disaster help: ATO assistance for taxpayers affected by natural disasters such as flood, cyclones and bushfires and other unforeseen events can include the deferral of payment and/or lodgment deadlines – see Dealing With Disasters

Lodgement Compliance

Penalties apply for non-lodgement and late lodgement which may include fines, interest on a time basis on the underlying tax debt and loss of future lodgement extension privileges.

To minimise exposure in circumstances of default or potential default, early contact with the Tax Office to negotiate arrangements is recommended.

The range of non-lodgement compliance actions is set out here.

Until 31 December 2019, the Tax Office utilised outsourced lodgement compliance arrangements.

Appointing a Tax Agent – Deadlines

Tax Agents automatically have an extension of time to lodge tax returns, according to their adherence to a progressive lodgment program.

To be added to a tax agent’s program for the first time, you should contact a tax agent before 31 October, or if transferring from another agent, by 31 December.

Tax Agents’ Lodgment Program

See also:

Tax Forms. Not all forms are available as a download. Many of those that are, are linked here.

Tax Return Forms Link Page

All other forms: See ATO’s forms list

This page was last modified 2024-05-08