In order to know if I am an Australian Resident for tax purposes, it is important to have clear that the ATO doesn’t use the same rules as the Department of Immigration to determine the residency, that means that someone:

  • Can be an Australian resident for tax purposes without being an Australian citizen or permanent resident.
  • May has a visa to enter to Australia, but is not an Australian resident for tax purposes.

What does it mean to be an australian resident for tax purposes?

If you are an Australian resident for tax purposes you will generally be taxed by the Australian government on your worldwide income from all sources.

In the case of non-residents or foreign residents for tax purposes will only be taxed on their Australian income (subject to some exceptions).

Student Visa

If you are an overseas student who are enrolled in a course that lasts 6 months or more, you are generally regarded as Australian resident for tax purposes. That means:

  • You will pay tax on your earnings at the same rates as the other residents.
  • You are entitled to the benefits of the Australian tax system, such as:
    • The tax-free threshold (or part of it, if you are here only part of the income year)
    • Tax offsets (rebates)
    • Generally lower tax rates than a foreign resident

Working Holiday Visa

If you are in Australia with a working holiday visa you are not considered as a Resident for tax purposes. This is because most of the backpackers do not intend to stay in Australia, but only to have a holiday while working some of the time.

The income earned by backpackers in Australia is taxed at the working holiday maker tax rate of 15% up to $37,000 in an income year. This is regardless of the residency status.

What happen if your residency status changes?

If you begin the income year as a non resident but your status change and become a resident halfway through, your income will be taxed at the same rate as an Australian resident.

More Information

If you need any assistance related with your residency status for tax purposes, please contact our professional team on (+ 61) 2 8317 1281, or send us an email to [email protected].