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Let's look into the process of getting a tax refund, with the experts from MyTax.co.nz. Firstly, let's explore how and why you actually pay tax in New Zealand.
How do you pay income tax?
New Zealand has a tax system that uses PAYE or Pay As You Earn, for those who earn wages or salary incomes.
PAYE means that your employer deducts income tax as you go, and this goes to the IRD on your behalf. This is the responsibility of your employer, and they attach your IRD number and your tax code to this, in order to make sure the correct amounts are worked out.
You will be issued an IRD number that is unique to you, and you will work out your tax code using the guide that is supplied by the IRD. You can download or view that guide here http://www.ird.govt.nz/forms-guides/keyword/taxcodes/forms-guides-subject-tax-codes.html
So how do I get a tax refund if my employer deducts the right amount?
Typically, there are many factors that can mean the wrong amount of tax is deducted, and there are also a number of credits the IRD allows you, based on certain criteria, that could mean your deducted amount of tax is actually larger than what you should pay. This discrepancy is what amounts to many people being able to claim and receive tax refunds in NZ. On a similar note, it is also commonplace to be taxed at higher rates on things like commissions or bonuses, which results in net overpayment of tax to the IRD.
How can I apply for a tax refund?
There are two ways to apply for a tax refund in New Zealand. Both use the IRD, and both require input from you -
but one option is much easier, safer and quicker. Let's look at them both:
1) You can apply for your own tax refund directly with the IRD.
Go to the IRD website at www.ird.govt.nz
Go to the area called 'Work it out' and navigate to the correct area from the list of around 16 options. You will see
many choices, usually the correct one for you will be PAYE.
Choose the year that you need to work with. The list includes some other areas you don't need to worry about.
Fill in all the details in the process after obtaining all the information you will need, including all income details from the year in question.
If it's all correct, and there is a refund amount - not tax to pay - you can confirm the PTS and then await your refund.
Using this method, you simply fill in your details on their website, and they will take care of all the IRD dealings for you.
They are highly experienced and will only file refunds, not tax payments, which is a common mistake people make when filing their own returns.
MyTax obtain your refund, and after deducting their low fee, they will send you the balance of the refund amount.
What are the main benefits of using a tax agent like MyTax?
You don't need to be familiar with the IRD website's complex options
They can often add rebates and deduct expense claims that you might be unaware of
They only file refunds not tax payments
You don't need to deal with the IRD on the phone
They will check and file upto 5 previous tax years
The MyTax.co.nz tax refund process