As an accountant, I often come across clients with straightforward tax situations who can benefit significantly from using myGov for their tax returns. myGov, linked with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), provides a convenient and user-friendly platform for completing and submitting tax returns online. If your tax affairs are simple, this guide will help you navigate the process of doing your tax return on myGov.

1. Setting Up myGov and Linking to the ATO

  • Create a myGov Account: If you don’t already have a myGov account, create one at You’ll need an email address to sign up.
  • Link to the ATO: Once your myGov account is created, link it to the ATO by following the prompts. You may need your TFN and some details from a previously lodged tax return or ATO correspondence for verification.

2. Accessing the Tax Return Service

  • Log in to myGov: Sign in to your myGov account and select the ATO service.
  • Navigate to ‘Tax’ Section: Once in the ATO section, navigate to the ‘Tax’ tab and select ‘Lodgments’ to access the online tax return service.

3. Pre-filled Information

  • Review Pre-filled Data: The ATO pre-fills some information based on data received from employers, banks, government agencies, etc. This may include salaries and wages, bank interest, and government payments.
  • Verify Accuracy: It’s important to verify the pre-filled information for accuracy and completeness.

4. Adding Additional Information

  • Enter Other Details: Manually add any other income, such as income from sole trading activities or rental income if these have not been pre-filled.
  • Claim Deductions: You can claim deductions for work-related expenses, charitable donations, and other allowable deductions. Ensure you have records to substantiate these claims.

5. Review and Submit

  • Check Thoroughly: Review your tax return carefully for any errors or omissions. Remember, you are responsible for the accuracy of the information submitted, even if it was pre-filled.
  • Submit Tax Return: Once you are satisfied with the information, submit your tax return. You will receive a confirmation receipt from the ATO.

6. After Submission

  • Tracking Your Return: You can track the progress of your return through myGov. The ATO typically processes returns within two weeks.
  • Notice of Assessment: After processing, you’ll receive a Notice of Assessment and any refund due will be deposited into your nominated bank account.

7. Benefits of Using myGov

  • Convenience: Completing your tax return through myGov is convenient and can be done from the comfort of your home.
  • Speed: Electronic lodgment is faster than paper returns, and refunds are processed more quickly.
  • Accessibility: Past tax returns and notices of assessment are easily accessible in one place.

8. Seeking Assistance

  • Professional Help: If you encounter complexities or have questions, it’s advisable to consult with a professional accountant for guidance.

For individuals with simple tax affairs, using myGov for your tax return is a straightforward and efficient option. It streamlines the tax lodgment process, making it accessible for anyone comfortable with basic online services. However, always ensure the information is accurate and complete before submission, and don’t hesitate to seek professional advice if needed. Embracing this digital approach can simplify your annual tax filing, saving time and effort.