Being an employer, you are required to keep records relating to fringe benefits that you provide to your employees or family of your employees, or other associates, including calculations you made for the taxable value of benefits. If you want to take benefits of several exemptions or concessions that can minimise your fringe benefits tax (FBT) liability, then you are required to maintain records.
Types of Records Need to be Maintained for FBT
|Information that your records need to maintain||Examples of types of records|
Where your associate offers a fringe benefit to your employee, the associate is required to give copies of records to you within the time period of 21 days of the end of the fringe benefits tax (FBT) year.
How long do you have to maintain FBT records?
You are required to maintain FBT records for at least five years from the date your FBT return was filed. If your associate offers a fringe benefit to your employee, they also need to maintain FBT records for 5 years from the completion of the action or transaction.
Types of Records Need to be Obtained from Employees
Some concessions and exemptions need you to obtain records from your employees. It includes:
- bills of sale
- travel diaries
- copies of odometer records and logbooks
- lease documents
Record-Keeping Exemption Arrangements
You may qualify to calculate your FBT liability depending on the sum of the taxable value of fringe benefits you offered in an earlier base year. You need to maintain full FBT records in the base year. If you use this arrangement, you don’t need to maintain full FBT records for a specific FBT year. However, you may still have to report fringe benefits value in your employees’ payment summaries or via Single Touch Payroll.
Lodgment of Your FBT Return
You need to lodge FBT return if, for the FBT year, you either:
- have fringe benefits tax payable on fringe benefits you offered your employees
- paid fringe benefits tax instalments via your activity statements.
However, if you don’t know how to lodge an FBT return, you can seek help from a professional tax accountant. For this, you can also hire a tax accountant near your area by searching ‘tax accountant near me’. If you are owed a refund and paid FBT instalments, you will get it after lodging your FBT return.
Paying FBT Instalments via Activity Statements
If you need to pay fringe benefits tax of $3,000 or above for the year, you need to pay FBT instalments quarterly in the next year. Your activity statement will show:
- the due date for filing and paying your activity statement
- the amount of your FBT instalment.
When you file your FBT return annually, you offset the instalments you paid during the year against your FBT liability. If your instalments are:
- lower than your liability, you will pay the shortfall
- above your liability, the ATO will refund the excess
You need to file all your activity statements for the FBT year that ends on 31st March, including the March quarter, prior to filing your FBT return. Your FBT return will not be processed until your activity statements are filed or lodged.
The blog shares types of FBT return records along with the time for maintaining those records. If you don’t know about FBT returns, you can ask a professional tax accountant. For this, you can also get in touch with Reliable Melbourne Accountants.
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