Annual returns for payroll tax

The annual payroll tax return breaks down the past year's wages, and is used to calculate your liability for the year.

You must lodge your annual return by 21 July each year for the previous financial year and pay any outstanding amounts.

If you have overpaid tax for the year, we will apply the amount to other outstanding liabilities you may have, then we will refund you any remaining amount.

Calculating your annual liability or refund

If you lodge your annual return online, your annual deductions and liability or refund will be automatically calculated. You will need to have ready your Australian taxable wages.

You can use the annual liability calculator to calculate your liability or refund before lodging your annual return.

Non-grouped employers

If you are not grouped, you will need the following information to calculate your annual payroll tax liability:

  • Queensland taxable wages (e.g. commissions, superannuation, allowances)
  • interstate wages.

Grouped employers

If you are in a group, you must still lodge your own annual return. You will need the following information to calculate your annual payroll tax:

  • Queensland taxable wages
  • interstate wages.

If you are not the designated group employer (DGE), you are not usually entitled to a deduction.

At the end of the financial year, you must inform the DGE of your total wages (this is required to calculate the deduction amount for the DGE).

Designated group employers

If you are the DGE, you will need:

  • your Queensland taxable wages
  • the total group Queensland taxable wages
  • your interstate wages
  • the total group interstate wages.

If your status changed and you were not the DGE for the whole year, your annual return will only cover the part of the year that you were a DGE as you should have submitted a final return when your status changed.

If your annual deduction is greater than your taxable wages, you can nominate other members of your group to share the excess. If you do not nominate anyone, the Commissioner of State Revenue will decide which group member will receive this amount.

If a refund of payroll tax is due at the end of the financial year, we will process the refund when we receive your return.

Example

This example demonstrates calculating the annual deduction for a DGE. It uses group Australian taxable wages of $1,789,776 and group Queensland taxable wages of $1,356,789.

Image showing calculation of annual deduction

Lodging an annual return

At the end of a financial year, you must:

  • lodge an annual return for taxable wages paid or payable during the year
  • compare your periodic return payments with your annual liability amount
  • pay any outstanding amounts (known as your annual liability) by 21 July.

You cannot lodge your annual return until all your periodic returns for the financial year have been submitted. You must include any taxable wages for the June period in the annual return. You do not need to lodge a separate periodic return for the period ending 30 June.

You still need to lodge an annual return if you have paid taxable wages after lodging a final return. However, you do not need to declare any wages already included in the final return.

If your status change occurs on 1 July, you do not need to lodge a final return - indicate your change of status on your annual return.

You must keep copies of your annual returns and all supporting documentation for at least 5 years.

You can lodge your annual return online through OSRconnect. We have tutorials with step-by-step instructions for:

You can pay your liability:

  • online - by direct payment from your nominated bank account through OSRconnect
  • by cheque - by sending us the lodgement confirmation page with your payment.

Read more about paying your payroll tax returns.

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