Starting a business: Your business tax obligations
A balance date is the end of an accounting year. When you apply for an IRD number, your balance date will be 31 March. For most businesses the accounting year begins on 1 April and ends the following 31 March. This is referred to as a standard balance date. If you want to use a balance date other than 31 March, you can apply to us to change your balance date.
Change of balance date
To change a balance date you need to write to us and your application should include the following information:
- Your full name and IRD number.
- Which industry you're in, for example farming, fishing.
- The balance date you want to use.
- The reason why you want to use a non-standard balance date.
- Names of any associated businesses which already use this balance date (and their IRD number if known).
- Details of actual or predicted cashflows, stock patterns, customer demands and seasonal patterns.
- Any other information to show that financial accounts prepared to the proposed balance date would be more appropriate than using a 31 March balance date.
Industry balance date
The following table provides a list of commonly recognised industry balance dates.
|Apiarist||30 Nov or 31 Dec|
|Beef cattle or dairy farming||31 May|
|Education/childcare related services||31 Dec|
|Horse breeding||31 Jul|
|Kiwifruit orchard||31 Jan, 28 Feb, or 31 Mar|
|Meat processing and export||31 Aug or 30 Sep|
|Pipfruit orchard||30 Jun, 31 Dec|
|Seed dressers||30 Nov|
|Sheep farming||30 Jun|
|Tobacco growing||31 Jul|
We won't approve a change of balance date for any of these reasons:
- Because it's the anniversary of the date business started.
- Reasons of tax deferral or tax avoidance.
- To take undue advantage of any tax incentive or concession.
See Standard Practice Statement 08/04 for more information about electing to change a balance date.
Date published: 13 Jul 2012
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