shutterstock_613400372

The benefits of using tax agents or tax accountants

A tax agent or accountant can help you lodge your tax return, claim more deductions and get you more tax back.

Using a professional tax accountant has many benefits. Tax returns can be tricky, and tax agents can help you prepare and submit your tax return. They are generally accountants registered to provide tax-related advice. Tax agents liaise closely with their clients to help them claim as many deductions as possible and get the biggest tax return. They can also help and provide advice for managing your taxes throughout the year.

Choosing a tax agent

Updated December 10th, 2018
Name Product Fee for unlimited income items (Wages) Deduction Item Fees Payment Options Online tax returns On-site tax returns
finder Exclusive: $99 flat fee
Included in flat fee
Credit/Debit card
Bank Transfer
Pay with your tax refund (no upfront payment)
Australia wide
Melbourne
finder Exclusive: This discounted fee is only available to customers who apply for a tax return with A One Accountants through finder. Students, seniors and non-permanent residents enjoy a further discount with a $77 flat fee. Click 'Go to site' and complete the contact form to find out more. T&Cs apply. Option to pay with your tax refund for an extra fee of $22. Lodge returns online, via phone or in person.
$79*
$0 when you purchase the $49 income package
Credit/Debit card
Pay with your tax refund (no upfront payment)
Australia wide
N/A
Option to pay with your tax refund for an extra fee of $10 for basic returns. Lodge individual & company tax returns. Fast online form & free live chat.
$80*
$0 for up to $1000 of deductions
$30 for more than $1000 of deductions
Credit/Debit card
Cash
Australia wide
Sydney
Fast and reliable tax returns for individuals, businesses and self-managed super funds (SMSFs).
$80*
Business tax: starting from $250
General deductions: $0
For motor vehicle expenses: $15
Credit/Debit card
Australia wide
Perth
A boutique firm that provides personalised experiences for all customers. Ideal option for individuals and small businesses based in Perth.
One Minute Tax
One Minute Tax
$99*
$0
Credit/Debit card
Pay with your tax refund (no upfront payment)
Australia wide
Melbourne
Option to pay with your tax refund for an extra fee of $20. Lodge individual & company tax returns. Fast online form & free live chat.
$99*
$0 for up to 2 deductions
$29 for additional deductions
Credit/Debit card
Pay with your tax refund (no upfront payment)
Australia wide
Sydney
Option to pay with your tax refund for an extra fee of $29. Online and in-person tax services for individuals, sole traders and companies.
$99*
Business tax: starting from $179
$29 for up to 2 deductions
Additional $29 for extra deductions
Credit/Debit card
Bank transfer
Pay with your tax refund (no upfront payment)
N/A
Melbourne
Option to pay with your tax refund for an extra fee of $29. Basic tax returns over the phone Australia-wide. In-person individual and business tax returns in Melbourne.
$155*
finder Exclusive: $5 discount
$0 for all work related deductions
Bank transfer
Credit/Debit card
Australia wide
Canberra
finder Exclusive: $5 discount when you apply for a tax return with Bennetts Tax through finder. Click 'Go to site' and complete the contact form to find out more. Income item fee includes returns on interest, dividends, Superannuation and pension. A flexible option for individuals, sole traders and companies.

Compare up to 4 providers

Updated December 10th, 2018
Name Product Fee for unlimited income items (Wages) Deduction Item Fees Payment Options Online tax returns
finder Exclusive: $99 flat fee
Included in flat fee
Credit/Debit card
Bank Transfer
Pay with your tax refund (no upfront payment)
Australia wide
finder Exclusive: This discounted fee is only available to customers who apply for a tax return with A One Accountants through finder. Students, seniors and non-permanent residents enjoy a further discount with a $77 flat fee. Click 'Go to site' and complete the contact form to find out more. T&Cs apply. Option to pay with your tax refund for an extra fee of $22. Lodge returns online, via phone or in person.
One Minute Tax
One Minute Tax
$99*
$0
Credit/Debit card
Pay with your tax refund (no upfront payment)
Australia wide
Option to pay with your tax refund for an extra fee of $20. Lodge individual & company tax returns. Fast online form & free live chat.
$79*
$0 when you purchase the $49 income package
Credit/Debit card
Pay with your tax refund (no upfront payment)
Australia wide
Option to pay with your tax refund for an extra fee of $10 for basic returns. Lodge individual & company tax returns. Fast online form & free live chat.
$99*
$0 for up to 2 deductions
$29 for additional deductions
Credit/Debit card
Pay with your tax refund (no upfront payment)
Australia wide
Option to pay with your tax refund for an extra fee of $29. Online and in-person tax services for individuals, sole traders and companies.
$80*
Business tax: starting from $250
General deductions: $0
For motor vehicle expenses: $15
Credit/Debit card
Australia wide
A boutique firm that provides personalised experiences for all customers. Ideal option for individuals and small businesses based in Perth.
$155*
finder Exclusive: $5 discount
$0 for all work related deductions
Bank transfer
Credit/Debit card
Australia wide
finder Exclusive: $5 discount when you apply for a tax return with Bennetts Tax through finder. Click 'Go to site' and complete the contact form to find out more. Income item fee includes returns on interest, dividends, Superannuation and pension. A flexible option for individuals, sole traders and companies.
$80*
$0 for up to $1000 of deductions
$30 for more than $1000 of deductions
Credit/Debit card
Cash
Australia wide
Fast and reliable tax returns for individuals, businesses and self-managed super funds (SMSFs).

Compare up to 4 providers

Updated December 10th, 2018
Name Product Fee for unlimited income items (Wages) Deduction Item Fees Payment Options On-site tax returns
$99*
$0 for up to 2 deductions
$29 for additional deductions
Credit/Debit card
Pay with your tax refund (no upfront payment)
Sydney
Option to pay with your tax refund for an extra fee of $29. Online and in-person tax services for individuals, sole traders and companies.
$80*
$0 for up to $1000 of deductions
$30 for more than $1000 of deductions
Credit/Debit card
Cash
Sydney
Fast and reliable tax returns for individuals, businesses and self-managed super funds (SMSFs).

Compare up to 4 providers

Updated December 10th, 2018
Name Product Fee for unlimited income items (Wages) Deduction Item Fees Payment Options On-site tax returns
finder Exclusive: $99 flat fee
Included in flat fee
Credit/Debit card
Bank Transfer
Pay with your tax refund (no upfront payment)
Melbourne
finder Exclusive: This discounted fee is only available to customers who apply for a tax return with A One Accountants through finder. Students, seniors and non-permanent residents enjoy a further discount with a $77 flat fee. Click 'Go to site' and complete the contact form to find out more. T&Cs apply. Option to pay with your tax refund for an extra fee of $22. Lodge returns online, via phone or in person.
$99*
Business tax: starting from $179
$29 for up to 2 deductions
Additional $29 for extra deductions
Credit/Debit card
Bank transfer
Pay with your tax refund (no upfront payment)
Melbourne
Option to pay with your tax refund for an extra fee of $29. Basic tax returns over the phone Australia-wide. In-person individual and business tax returns in Melbourne.
One Minute Tax
One Minute Tax
$99*
$0
Credit/Debit card
Pay with your tax refund (no upfront payment)
Melbourne
Option to pay with your tax refund for an extra fee of $20. Lodge individual & company tax returns. Fast online form & free live chat.

Compare up to 4 providers

Updated December 10th, 2018
Name Product Fee for unlimited income items (Wages) Deduction Item Fees Payment Options On-site tax returns
$80*
Business tax: starting from $250
General deductions: $0
For motor vehicle expenses: $15
Credit/Debit card
Perth
A boutique firm that provides personalised experiences for all customers. Ideal option for individuals and small businesses based in Perth.

Compare up to 4 providers

Updated December 10th, 2018
Name Product Fee for unlimited income items (Wages) Deduction Item Fees Payment Options On-site tax returns
$155*
finder Exclusive: $5 discount
$0 for all work related deductions
Bank transfer
Credit/Debit card
Canberra
finder Exclusive: $5 discount when you apply for a tax return with Bennetts Tax through finder. Click 'Go to site' and complete the contact form to find out more. Income item fee includes returns on interest, dividends, Superannuation and pension. A flexible option for individuals, sole traders and companies.

Compare up to 4 providers

*This is the minimum fee charged for income item tax returns. The price listed on this table is subject to terms and conditions. To find out more or to receive an accurate quote for your tax return, please visit the agent's website to submit an enquiry.

The products compared on this page are chosen from a range of products finder.com.au has access to track details from and is not representative of all the products available in the market. Products are displayed in no particular order or ranking. The use of terms "Best" and "Top" are not product ratings and are subject to our disclaimer. You should consider seeking independent financial advice and consider your personal financial circumstances when comparing products.

What is an accountant?

Accountants are professionals that specialise in expenses, financial audits, and other finance-related information. They may operate independently, providing advice to individuals, or they may operate within a business, performing bookkeeping duties. Accountants can act as tax agents, but in order to do so they must be registered with the Tax Practitioners Board.

What is a tax agent?

A tax agent is a specialist you can use to prepare and lodge your tax return. They can represent their client when dealing with the Australian Tax Office (ATO). Tax agents can assist you to get the most money back from your tax return. They must be registered with the overseeing organisation for tax professionals, the Tax Practitioners Board (TPB), to charge a fee for their service. Every tax agent accredited by the TPB meets the Board’s qualification and experience requirements.

Tax agents versus accountants - which is best for me?

As mentioned, tax agents are normally TPB-registered accountants. If you require a relatively simple tax return, or if you simply don’t want to complete one yourself, tax agents might be ideal. If, however, you have a business or are an individual with property and significant financial assets, an accountant might be necessary for handling these assets. Broadly, accountants will take their clients' future financial situation into consideration, whereas tax agents will not.

Will using a tax agent help with my tax return?

Online services such as the ATO’s myTax have made preparing and lodging your own tax return possible, if you have the time. Still, unless you’re a tax agent, the yearly tax return can be a chore. A tax agent can help you prepare and submit your tax return, help you maximise your deductions, ensure that your tax return is compliant and can assist with slightly more complicated matters if you have assets. But remember that you are still responsible for your final submitted document. The fee for hiring a tax agent is tax deductible, too.

Key benefits of using a tax agent

  • Takes the stress out of competing your tax return.
  • Saves you time, as they lodge your return for you on your behalf. Completing the form yourself can take hours.
  • Can help get you more tax back by claiming more deductions.
  • You can claim the cost of a tax agent as a deduction the following year.
  • You can wait until into the new year to lodge your return if you use a tax agent. If you do your own tax, your return must be submitted to the ATO before the 31st of October.
  • A tax agent can also provide personal advice in areas of taxation law.
  • Many tax accountants can help lodge your tax return online, without needing to go into their office.

Any cons of using a tax agent?

  • There is a fee for their service
  • They will not provide general financial advice that isn't to do with tax

Tax Agents & AccountantsWhat qualifications should my tax agent have?

Tax agents must be registered with the Tax Practitioners Board (TPB) before they are able to charge for their service. Some practitioners can give advice and act as tax agents without being registered, as long as they are operating under a group that is registered by the TPB.

To be eligible as a registered tax agent, the individual must have a good record with no recent convictions, involvement in tax exploitation, ongoing bankruptcies, or imprisonment. Once registered, practitioners can bear the TPB registered symbol. You can find registered agents by visiting the Tax Practitioners Board website.

How do I find a cheap tax agent or accountant that best meets my needs?

Finding a good tax agent is similar to finding a good quality service of another variety. Seek out many quotes from many different sources and consider the following features:

  • Fees. How much do they charge to complete a basic tax return?
  • Types of returns. Can they perform more complex tax returns, such as those required by SMSFs, small businesses, sole traders and people with various income streams?
  • Credentials. Make sure they are registered with the Tax Practitioners Board
  • Qualifications. Check they have a relevant university degree such as accounting, commerce or law and how long they have been operating.
  • Speed. How long will it take them to complete your tax return?
  • Delivery mode. Can they help you online, or do you need to visit their office?
  • Hours of operation. If you work standard business hours, it can be beneficial to find a tax agent open on weekends.
  • Reputation. Do they have good reviews from past clients? Do you have any family and friends that have had a good experience with them?
  • Do they specialise in any area? Some tax agents may specialise in tax returns for students, backpackers, seniors, immigrants and emigrants.

Where are you looking to find a tax agent?

Have a look at tax agents in each of the capital cities.

A checklist of general work related tax deductions.

Read more: Our tax guide for the end of the financial year.

Wait, I have more questions!


Was this content helpful to you? No  Yes

Related Posts

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com.au:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com.au is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our Terms of Use, Disclaimer & Privacy Policy and Privacy & Cookies Policy.

6 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    TomDecember 8, 2017

    I have a corporation in Australia that owns one property in Sydney. The only income is the monthly rental fee from one tenant and the expenses are that of the maintenance and upkeep of the property. The property has two bank accounts. I need an accountant to do the preparation and lodgement of the company tax returns. How much annual fees am I looking at annually?

    • Default Gravatar
      ArnoldDecember 8, 2017

      Hi Tom,

      Thanks for your inquiry

      The fees you’ll be paying will depend on the tax agent handling your case. It would be best to consult with a professional tag agent in order for you to get an estimate of these fees.

      Hope this information helps

      Cheers,
      Arnold

  2. Default Gravatar
    JongsoonAugust 31, 2016

    I had income from companies and I worked as a sole trader.
    I have logged through ATO but couldn’t process business part.
    Would you introduce a cheap tax agent?

    • finder Customer Care
      ClarizzaAugust 31, 2016Staff

      Hi Jongsoon,

      Thanks for your comment.

      You’re on the right page! You can view tax agents, their services and fees on the table on this page. Or you get in touch directly with a tax agent through here.

      Hope this helps.

      Clarizza

  3. Default Gravatar
    RolfJuly 1, 2016

    A client has consulted a tax agent in relation to penalties and interest charged for late returns.

    The agent wishes to charge the normal hourly rate plus a success fee that is a percentage of the penalties which may be remitted.

    Is a success/bonus or contingency fee allowable?

    • finder Customer Care
      ClarizzaJuly 4, 2016Staff

      Hi Rolf,

      Thanks for your question.

      The agent is legally able to do this per the Taxation Administration Act which allows you to claim back any expenses incurred by managing tax. You can also claim interest charged by the ATO on late payment of taxes and penalties.

      Please note, as a comparison site, the advice we provide is of a general nature only.

      I hope this helps.

      Clarizza

Ask a question
Go to site