The amount of annual income your organisation earns determines whether or not you'll need to register for GST.
- Work out if you need to register for GST
- Registering your organisation's branches and divisions for GST
- Opting for voluntary registration
- How to register your organisation for GST
You'll need to register for GST if your organisation:
- runs a taxable activity, and
- has an annual turnover of $60,000 or more, or
- at the end of any month, has a turnover of $60,000 or more for the past 12 months, or
- has an expected turnover of $60,000 or more for the next 12 months.
You don't need to register for GST if your organisation:
- only receives exempt income (this means there's no taxable activity), or
- has an annual turnover of less than $60,000
You can opt for voluntary registration if your income is below this figure.
If your organisation has branches or divisions, they can each register separately for GST. You only need to register the individual branches with a turnover of more than $60,000.
If your branch has a turnover of less than $60,000 you can still register voluntarily.
Your organisation can apply to us in writing to treat each branch separately. To register separately, each branch or division must:
- have its own independent accounting system, and
- be separately identified by its location or by the different activities it undertakes.
If your organisation's annual turnover is less than $60,000, you can choose to register voluntarily.
Advantages of voluntary registration
You'll be able to claim back GST if you:
- purchase goods and services from a registered person
- purchase secondhand goods from someone who isn't registered and use these goods in your activity
- have any set-up costs paid by an individual on behalf of a company before it's established. It can be claimed back by the company once it's incorporated.
- Your records are up-to-date and accurate if you complete regular returns.
Disadvantages of voluntary registration
- You must account to us for GST on all of your taxable supplies, including grants and subsidies.
- You can't claim any GST paid on expenses relating to exempt supplies.
- When you stop your registration you need to pay GST on the current market value of any business assets that you keep for private use.
- If you acquired the asset before 1 October 1986, the adjustment would be the lesser of cost price and the current market value.
Non-profit organisations are treated as a business when it comes to registering for GST.
Date published: 21 Apr 2010