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4 posts

Wannabe Geek


Topic # 30481 10-Feb-2009 10:36
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My husband is thinking of working as a short-term IT contractor in Australia, probably Brisbane. We have a company set up here to manage our earnings, but aren't sure how to go about doing this in Australia. We would want to be able to claim back expenses such as his rent/airfares etc while he worked on business there. Any advice or ideas appreciated on this plus tips on rental accommodation in Brisbane.

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 195079 10-Feb-2009 10:53
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Hi,

I have been looking doing exactly the same thing, and here is what I have found.  Contracting in Ausi is pretty much the same as here; you can be a sole trader or form a company, however company formation in Ausi is done either on a state level or on a national level (which are PTY LTD companies) with the latter being expensive ($600+).

If it is just a short contract you could loook at doing an 'umbrella' type situation where you get paid by the agency but you can then claim the LAFHA (living away from home allowance, a government scheme) to claim back living expenses such as accommodation and transport.

You can probably claim the airfares with your NZ company, but that might depend on the length of the contract.

Please note - I am not an accountant, just another contracting in a similar situation so this is just general advice.  Tax between countries can get very tricky, even with NZ/Ausi.  Personally I would form an Ausi company and use an accountant over there any pay the tax there myself, meaning less chance of getting double taxed here and there.

I have a friend who did this last year, I will quiz him as he did the LAFHA thing.



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Wannabe Geek


  Reply # 195080 10-Feb-2009 11:04
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Dear Timbosan

Thanks for the informative reply.  I agree on getting some help about how to set things up in Aussie re. tax. It's just not worth worrying the sleepless nights, and I presume all the accountants / company fees are tax deductible anyway. Would love to hear more from your friend and the LAFHA scheme, and of course I'll post anything else that I also find out.

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Ultimate Geek

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  Reply # 195193 10-Feb-2009 21:05
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Welcome to Geekzone! Hope working in Aussie works out for you guys...

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  Reply # 195200 10-Feb-2009 21:23
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Hi again,

I tried to find the email from my friend but I think I have deleted it!  Sorry!

But thinking back he did say pretty much that the agency he worked through paid his tax and medicare levi and he was paid a 'salary' (well, not really a salary because it was only from the income of the contract he was doing for a fixed term, but in the legal sense he was employed by the agency) and he claimed the Living away from home allowance to cover his rent and food.

This site here has details on the allowance from a company that provides the 'umbrella' type services the agency was providing to my friend.  They also list the rates you can claim.

If you want to form a company, from what I have read it is best to form an Ausi wide company even though it is more expensive.  One site I found which is very informative and lets you form a company online along with all the required legal documents in Incorporator.  I haven't used them but they where my first choice if required when I was looking recently at contracts in Melbourne.

The other approach, which can sometimes work, is to ask the Ausi company you contract for to pay you into your NZ account.  Always worth an ask.

Hope this helps more.



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Wannabe Geek


  Reply # 195314 11-Feb-2009 14:17
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Another great, informative answer. I'll certainly look into using the company set-up organisation you linked to. Thank you Timbosan.

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Ultimate Geek

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Reply # 195332 11-Feb-2009 15:58
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I'v done the same thing too...

I got a contract in NZ & got setup with an umbrealla company here in Oz.  I was able to claim all moving costs (movers, air fares etc, aprtment rental costs (until I got a house for rent)) and claim a LAFHA (rental + food allowance) as previuosly described in this thread.

I used ITG: http://www.myitg.com/ and I can give you a contact here if you're interested.  He'll be able to zoom you up some numbers to see what you'll theoretically bring home.  They will also take care of the 'insurances' too. PM me if required.




Cheers, Stevo



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Wannabe Geek


  Reply # 195671 13-Feb-2009 09:51
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Thank you for a great reply Stevo.

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  Reply # 195685 13-Feb-2009 11:47
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Thanks stevonz for the info; it is always great when someone confirms the details with actual experience!

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