What types of income do you need to include in your business’ tax return?

Posted on 29 July '20 by , under tax.

Due to changing economic circumstances, businesses may be receiving income from sources they have never received from, and may be unaware of their tax implications. In the event that they are listed below, you will need to include them in your business’ tax return.

Government payments
Due to COVID-19, many government grants and payments have been made to businesses this year. Businesses receiving the following grants will need to report them as part of their assessable income in this year’s tax return:

  • JobKeeper payments,
  • Supporting Apprentices and Trainees wage subsidy,
  • Grants under the Australian Apprenticeships Incentives Program,
  • Subsidies for carrying on a business.

Keep in mind that COVID-19 cash-flow boost payments are non-assessable and non-exempt income, meaning they do not have to be included as part of your assessable income.

Crowdfunding income
Crowdfunding refers to the usage of the internet or social media platforms, mail-order subscriptions, benefit events or other methods to find supporters and raise funds for your business’ projects and ventures. Profits made through crowdfunding are considered part of your business’ assessable income in the case that you have:

  • used crowdfunding in the course of your employment,
  • entered into a transaction with the intention of making a profit
  • received money or property in the ordinary course of your business.

Income from online activities
The current pandemic may have also forced you to move your business operations online for the first time. The ATO provides a clear distinction between online selling as a business or hobby. In the event that you meet the following circumstances while selling online, you will need to report your earnings as part of business’ assessable income:

  • Your main intention is to make a profit,
  • You sell items online on a regular basis,
  • The items or services you are selling are commonly available in a physical store, and
  • You pay for your online-selling presence.

Other basic income streams such as cash income, investment earnings and capital gains and losses also need to be reported in tax returns as usual.