If you have ever  been employed on salary or wages and paid PAYE in the last 5 years then you are probably owed an income tax refund for at least one of those years. There are a number of reasons why you could be owed a refund so I highly recommend you go through the process below to make sure you find out if a refund is owing and that you claim what is owing to you.  I recently helped a friend claim tax refunds for every year since 2009 and she is amazed how much she received.

You can claim for a refund for any year in the past 5 years very easily. You can even apply for a refund for years prior to that but it’s a bit more involved and you will need to download forms and fill them in manually to get the refund.

I will describe the online process below.  The Inland Revenue(IRD) has set up a system on their website which allows you to check if a refund is due before you complete the process.  If it looks as if you are entitled you can apply for a Personal Tax Summary (PTS) to enable you to complete your application.

The IRD do warn you that if you apply for a PTS and it turns out that you owe tax then you will have to pay it.  But you can avoid that happening by using their online calculator to check if a refund is owing first.

Before starting the process you will need the following information:-

  1. Your personal IRD tax number
  2. A Summary of any Interest you have earned during the year you are claiming the refund for showing the Source of Interest Income, total Interest Earned and total Withholding Tax deducted.

    Note 1: If you received a share of Interest paid in joint names you will need to do a split of the income and withholding tax and declare just your share.

  3. A Summary of any Dividends you have earned during the year showing the Source of Dividend Income, total Dividends Earned, total Withholding Tax deducted and total Imputation Credits (if any)

    Note 2: If you received a share of Dividends paid in joint names you will need to do a split of the income, withholding tax and imputation credits and declare just your share.

    Note 3: If you pay for an energy/power account for your household you probably received a dividend during the year that was credited to your power account or paid into your bank account.  Your share of that dividend must be included in your tax return.

Here is the process:-

  1. First you need to register with myIR Services online. A myIR account lets you manage all your Inland Revenue matters online. You can update your address or bank account details, work out your income tax filing options, file GST returns (if applicable) and check your eDocuments and KiwiSaver account.
  2. To register click on this link and complete the registration process –
    Register for Online Services
  3. Once you have competed the registration process you can login to myIR Services and start the refund process.Here is the login link –
    Login to Online Services
  4. When you are logged in you will see a dashboard with a number of tabs along the top.  Click on the My Income tab.  You will then see a summary listing your PTS’s for the past 5 years.  There may be more.For any year that you have not already claimed a refund you will see this message:-‘Check if you’re required to file an IR3 or receive a PTS. If it works out to be a PTS you can calculate if you’re entitled to a refund or request a PTS.’If you click on the link in the message you will then open a form which you can complete to see if you are entitled to a refund.  This form does not submit any personal information to IRD.  It is just designed to help you decide whether or not to apply for a refund. It’s a 4 step process.If it works out that you are entitled to a refund it will tell you the amount and you can apply for a PTS to start the refund process.

    Note 4: You can also save the form as a PDF or RTF document.  I recommend PDF.  Make sure you rename the form to something that makes sense to you to avoid overwriting it the next time you save a similar IRD document.

    Note 5: The ‘Money Back’ tab on the Home Page is another way you can open the form to calculate if a refund is due.

  5. Requesting the PTS starts the refund process.  You now have to return to the My Income tab on the Home Page to confirm the PTS for the relevant year and complete your application for a refund.
    Note: If you have requested a PTS for the year ended 31 March 2016 then you won’t see the Confirm PTS link in your My income tab until after 01/07/2016.