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How to handle taxes for students

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Doesn’t it feel good to be a student—carefree, parties here and there, and no major responsibilities yet other than academics? Yes, maybe, for those who think that’s how it is.

College isn’t all partying and skipping classes like how most teen and young adult comedy movies seem to show. University students, those who are over 18, actually have a whole lot of things to worry about more than the Kardashians and NBA finals. One of the major things they do: college bill and student loans.

With this heavy burden on their shoulders, taxes could only be the least of their priorities. But the thing is, even at the early age of being a student, no one is exempt from doing their taxes—it’s inescapable. To help you get a headstart, and aside from the basics such as which forms to take, here are some guides to help students deal with their taxes.  

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Determine sources of assessable income

We all know how much workload you already have with work and at uni, let’s not make it any more difficult by assessing your sources of income in order to know whether or not you need to keep a tax return.

Here are a few of the sources you may or may not have: work income, tips received, investment income, government payments received, youth allowance/s, distributions from a family trust, and the works.

Self-education expenses

Let’s admit it: the real world can be far from what you hoped for, it’s reasonable to do something about it. If you’re studying a course/courses related to your career or to improve your skills in your work currently, you have the liability to claim your self-education expenses.

Working full time while studying part-time in relevance to your current job allows you to claim these relevant tax deductions. If the purpose of going back to school while still working full time is to change careers, you won’t be eligible for one.

Deductions university students can claim

There are a lot of expenses that eat up your income or allowance, here are the ones you can claim self-education expenses: textbooks, student union fees, course fees, computers, travel expenses (for seminars) are a few among others.

Organize all receipts and documents

Of course, in order to claim these deductions, the internal revenue would require you to file them your proof of purchase. This is one of the simplest parts of tax filing that requires tediousness and organization.

Keep all your receipts, printed or electronic, and file all the relevant documents for everything school-related purchases. There are a lot of software and mobile applications you can use to snap and keep a record of your receipts, download one so the next time you purchase a book, you can quickly capture the receipt which you can directly file/send to your accountant.

How did you handle your taxes as a student? Did you hire an accountant to help you settle it or did you do it yourself? How was the experience? We’d like to know, share it with us!

About the author:

Chie is a daytime writer for Depreciator – Tax Depreciation Schedule, a company dedicated completely to Tax Depreciation Schedules that aid the Australian property market.

 

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