PKF Kerikeri

Money on your mind?

You may not have noticed the lack of certain catch phrases “Money on Your Mind?” and “WooHoo” from the TV that are normally on at this time of year. You’re not alone as I didn’t know I was missing them until their absence was pointed out to me recently - ironically by an Inland Revenue representative. With the changes to government legislation and the IRD automatically processing tax refunds, these companies have either shut up shop or significantly changed their business models.  

Initial estimates indicated that 1.6 million people were in line for a tax refund to the tune of $150 million. If you are a salary or wage earner the IRD will automatically notify you with how much income you have earned, how much tax you have paid and if you are entitled to a refund. Once you’ve confirmed your bank account number the refund will automatically appear. Don’t panic if you haven’t received yours yet. Inland Revenue says it has reached the half-way mark paying out tax refunds for the latest year, with $319 million refunded to 1.3 million taxpayers so far.

The bad news is that with all this automation it may mean a tax bill for a few unlucky folks. Previously if you were a PTS filer but you didn’t request a summary, there was no tax to pay even if you hadn’t paid enough. Now the choice is no longer yours. This will add an estimated $50 million to IRD coffers.

The new-and-improved IRD system has been having a series of teething issues after it went live after Easter. This was the third stage of its $1.6 billion overhaul.

You may have received a “Third Party Access” letter in the mail. This letter is simply confirming that we are still your Tax Agents and are continuing to work with IRD on your behalf. You don’t need to do anything but please contact us if you are concerned.

If you receive any correspondence from IRD that you’re unsure about please let us know. Sometimes it pays to err on the side of caution and we can very quickly check if that tax refund is too good to be true. Unfortunately, there are scammers trying to take advantage of the system so it pays to be vigilant. As a reminder, a genuine IRD email will never include the amount to be refunded, ask you to make a payment or to release a tax refund as all of this information is only available through your secure myIR portal.

IRD are no longer issuing refund cheques. Any tax refund must be credited directly into a bank account. We have noticed that some refunds have been for the wrong amount, usually prematurely before any requested transfers have been actioned. If there is an error in the refund expected to your bank account you have 14 days to direct credit the amount back to IRD.

If you are required to file a tax return and are not linked to a tax agent you need to have this done before 7th July. After this point you’ll be charged late filing penalties. Time is rapidly getting away on us and if you will not be in a position to do this yourself before due date, let us take care of it for you.

We have been providing accounting services in Kerikeri and the surrounding districts of the Bay of Islands for over 60 years. We are also part of the PKF Network, giving us access to national and international specialist services. So whether you’re looking for a Chartered Accountant to help you with your financial statements and tax returns or a Business Advisor to provide you with business coaching, call PKF Kerikeri and speak to one of our experienced team members today!

Article by Jancy Stott
PKF Kerikeri, Director