Wednesday, October 25, 2006

One of life's two certainties

The 31st October is looming and we all know what that means.....yes, it's the cutoff for income tax returns to be lodged. Well, it is if you're doing it yourself. Who needs a tax agent? Not me - I'm a big girl and I'm quite capable of doing my own tax return. Well, kind of.

Every year I say that I'm going to get my return lodged by the end of July and (almost) every year I leave it till the last possible moment. So last night was the night - I had the electronic return all completed, except for my share dividends. No I'm not some rich capitalist (I wish!), I just have a nice little parcel of shares I got as freebies when I was an employee of a big corporation in a previous life. Anyway, I had my February dividend statement, but couldn't find the August one. I'd made a few half-hearted attempts to find it, but I'd obviously put it in A Safe Place. And you know what a big mistake that is!

So last night I was forced to sift through months of papers waiting to be filed. OK, years, actually - it seems I'm a hoarder. Well, you never know when you might need a phone bill or a birthday card from 2002.

After a couple of hours of frustration and much swearing, I admitted defeat. But I had a brilliant idea - I rang my sister, who had also worked for the same organisation and who had received the same share allocations as me. I'd just get the dividend and franking credit amounts from her statement thingy. Brilliant! Or it would have been, if only she hadn't sold some of hers in the last couple of years. Damn.

So then I figured that if she just gave me the dividend price, I could get my calculator and figure out how much I got paid - and there must be some method for working out imputation credits. Surely. Company tax rate or something? Only it turns out that her filing is just as behind as mine and she had no idea where the elusive piece of paper was. THEN she says "can't you get the information off the website?". Website? They have that stuff on the internet? Seriously?

So I go to the website and find a link that says "shareholder centre". Well, blow me down. I find the right page, enter my holding number and name and some other stuff and whaddya know? They have ALL MY DIVIDEND CERTIFICATES ONLINE! Who knew this?

So my 2006 tax return is finally lodged - and with 7 days to spare. Next year I'm determined to get it done in July. But of course, that will never happen....


Kathryn said...

I'm always good at doing my tax because normally they owe me money and I want it!

Ihave a great filing system - I clip all my tax stuff together with a big bulldog clip and chuck it in the drawer. Low tech, but it works :)

Anonymous said...

LOL OMG I have my tax return done in the first week of July if I can

MTB Girl said...

Kek, didn't we talk about this months ago :P I assumed you had got it done already - oh well, it is done for the year, and I'm sure your new business helped with deductions and a nice refund :)

Deb said...

Sister....they don't make a bottle of wine big enough to get you through doing your own taxes!!!! SAVE YOURSELF! ;)

Debstar said...

I'm learning so much from you Kerryn.
How to get grease stains out of clothes.
Where to get the eziyo products.
Best foods to eat.
And now how to find dividend certificates on line. (yeah I've lost those stupid things too. they shouldn't tax us on dividends we cant find don't you think)
You are so clever!!!!!

Kek said...

What can I say? It's really quite embarrassing when I worked for a bank for 20 years and then spent the last 6 years

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