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Fuel tax credit mistakes

Posted on April 15, 2018 by admin

Fuel tax credits are provided to businesses who acquire, manufacture, import or use fuel in part of running a business.

These credits can greatly benefit business owners but it is important to get the claim right. The ATO sees common mistakes made when calculating and claiming fuel tax credits, including:

Wrong calculations
A common error is to calculate fuel tax credits using the cost of the fuel rather than the quantity of fuel multiplied by the relevant rate. The correct formula is: quantity of eligible fuel x correct fuel tax credit rate = fuel tax credits.

Inaccurate records
You must keep accurate records of your fuel purchases and how the fuel is used in your business. If you claim less than $10,000 a year in fuel tax credits, you can use a range of documents to support your claims.

Using an incorrect rate
Fuel tax credit rates change every February. Check the rates before you lodge your BAS. The current rates for fuel acquired from 5 February 2018 to 30 June 2018 are as follows:

Eligible fuel type Unit Used in heavy vehicles for travelling on public roads All other business uses (including to power auxiliary equipment of a heavy vehicle)1
Liquid fuels, for example diesel or petrol cents per litre 15.1 40.9
Blended fuels: B5, B20, E10 cents per litre 15.1 40.9
Liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) (duty paid) cents per litre 0.0 13.3
Liquefied natural gas (LNG) or compressed natural gas (CNG) (duty paid) cents per kilogram 0.0 28.0
Blended fuel: E85 cents per litre 0.0 10.725
B100 cents per litre 0.0 2.7

Not checking the activity
A common mistake is to claim fuel tax credits using the ‘other business uses’ rate for heavy vehicles travelling on public roads. Rates differ depending on the activity they are used for.

Ineligible fuels
Claiming fuel used for private purposes, or for travelling on a public road in vehicles with a gross vehicle mass (GVM) of 4.5 tonne or less is a common error. If you are unsure if about the eligibility of your fuel type and usage, contact one of our accountants today.

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Avoiding mortgage default

Posted on August 26, 2020 by admin

As individuals struggle with cash flow through the coronavirus, the Australian Bankers Association records that repayments on almost 500,000 mortgages have been deferred for six months. While repayments can be delayed, they cannot be avoided altogether.

Lenders can send you a default notice the day your repayment is overdue. However, they could also wait until your repayment is overdue by 90 or more days. When you receive a default notice, you are given 30 days to repay the amounts you have missed in addition to the regular repayment on your loan. Individuals who are struggling with their home loan repayments can avoid mortgage default by considering the following.

Contact your lender
Lenders are generally willing to work with you through financial hardship. Don’t be afraid to contact your lender to discuss your situation and find out what options are available for you. Lenders are often willing to negotiate short-term variations to repayment schedules that both parties can agree to. However, make sure that you do not agree to unrealistic repayment conditions that cannot be met.

Many Australian banks are offering a six-month deferral on mortgage repayments (including interest) for customers who are experiencing financial hardship as a result of COVID-19. If this is you, contact your bank to see if this is an option.

Apply for a hardship variation
Mortgage holders may be able to change the terms of their loan or temporarily pause or reduce their repayments under a hardship variation. A hardship variation can still be requested after you receive a mortgage default. To apply for one, contact your lender’s “hardship officer” and tell them that you wish to change your loan repayments due to financial hardship. This will usually require you to explain why you are struggling to make payments and to estimate how long your financial problems will continue to determine how much you can afford to repay.

After submitting a hardship variation request, your lender must contact you within 21 days with the outcome of your request. They may ask you for more details regarding your request; in this case, they must contact you again within 21 days from when you provide the additional information.

Consider selling your home
Selling your home is a tough decision, but in some cases this may be the better option if your circumstances are unlikely to improve. If you get to the point where your lender takes possession of your home and sells it, it’s likely that you won’t make as much as if you sold it yourself. When you sell your house on your own terms, chances are you will get a better price and avoid having to pay the legal fees passed on by your lender. Inform your lender if you decide to sell your home; they may ask for proof, such as a copy of the contract with your real estate agent or property advertisements.

Renting out your home until you can afford to make repayments again may also be an option if you are able to live somewhere else during this period.

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