Backpacker Tax: employers must register with ATO

Friday, 23rd December 2016 // Cotton Matters // Comments (0)

As growers will be aware, tax rates for working holiday makers (backpackers) with visa sub-class 417 and 462 change from January 1, 2017. The Australian Tax Office (ATO) requires all businesses employing (or planning to employ) working holiday makers (backpackers) to register by January 31, 2017.

Key points:

  • Employees should withhold 15% tax from working holiday makers from January 1, 2017. This applies to the first $37,000 of a working holiday maker’s income. From $37,001, normal foreign resident withholding rates apply.
  • The Australian Tax Office (ATO) requires all businesses employing (or planning to employ) working holiday makers (backpackers) to register with their Office by January 31, 2017.

How do I register with the ATO?

To register with the ATO, click here

What happens if I do not register?

Penalties may apply for failing to register with the ATO by January 31, 2017.

What are the requirements for superannuation?

Employer obligations for paying superannuation to working holiday makers remains the same as for Australian employees, requiring the equivalent of 9.5% of the employee’s wage be paid as a super contribution.

Where can I find more information?

Click below for more information from the ATO:

What can I do if I cannot access the online form?

If you have difficulty accessing the ATO’s online form, please contact the ATO to complete the registration process over the phone: 13 28 66

You will need your ABN to complete the process over the phone.