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Re: HELP debt repayments not matching salary reduction

Newbie

Views 1774

Replies 4

Hi,

 

In 2017 my income required me to pay a 5.5% repayment rate to my HELP debt, 5.5% was deducted automatically for each pay over the year, however once I lodged my tax return and the repayment was taken from my HELP debt, only 3.8% was deducted.

This means that out of the total amount that was deducted from my salary, only 70% was paid off my HELP debt.

Why would this occur? and where is that money I paid now? 

 

note: I did not recieve additional payment as part of my tax return. 

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Most helpful response

ATO Certified Response

Community Support

Replies 1

Hi @ellenwatson1991,

 

Welcome to our Community!

 

When your employer withholds additional amounts to cover your anticipated compulsory repayments, these amounts are remitted to the ATO as part of the employer's PAYG withholding obligations. The additional tax withheld is not applied to your loan account until:

  • you've lodged your tax return, and
  • a compulsory repayment has been calculated based on your repayment income.

You have the option to make voluntary repayments outside the PAYG withholding system.

 

If you'd like a detailed account explanation, you can phone us on 13 28 61 between 8am - 6pm, Monday to Friday to speak with an operator, have your TFN and account details with you when you call so the operator can ask you some identity questions to access your account.

 

Hope this helps.

4 REPLIES 4

Taxicorn

Replies 1

Your amounts deducted from your pay each period is a guestimate based on what they beleive you will earn that year.

 

When you come to do your tax return it calculates exactly how much really needs to be paid and then pays it when you lodge your tax return. 

 

Any surplus should be refunded to you.

 

However, if you have a tax payable (a bill) it will then use that surplus to pay all/some of it back.

 

Without knowing your details it would be hard to know exactly what happened.

 

Newbie

Replies 0

Thanks @macfanboy.for understanding my question and providing an answer. I thought the surplus has not been refunded to me but was told this morning that it is refunded as part of my tax return which is refunded as a lump sum. It wasn't obvious to me as I had allowable deductions well above what was returned so I assumed the tax return amount was from my deduction claims alone. 

Most helpful response

ATO Certified Response

Community Support

Replies 1

Hi @ellenwatson1991,

 

Welcome to our Community!

 

When your employer withholds additional amounts to cover your anticipated compulsory repayments, these amounts are remitted to the ATO as part of the employer's PAYG withholding obligations. The additional tax withheld is not applied to your loan account until:

  • you've lodged your tax return, and
  • a compulsory repayment has been calculated based on your repayment income.

You have the option to make voluntary repayments outside the PAYG withholding system.

 

If you'd like a detailed account explanation, you can phone us on 13 28 61 between 8am - 6pm, Monday to Friday to speak with an operator, have your TFN and account details with you when you call so the operator can ask you some identity questions to access your account.

 

Hope this helps.

Newbie

Replies 0

Hi Jodie,

 

Thank you for your quick response.

Yes, I understand the amount is not applied to my HELP account until I have lodged my tax return, as mentioned, an amount was paid to my loan account however it did not match the amount subtracted from my income over the preceding financial year.

 

I called the ATO this morning through the 13 28 61 number and spoke to someone for 1hr and 20minutes who could not understand the basics behind my tax return, he then said to me that he would try to get a second opinion from another department but if he couldn’t get through I would just have to “figure it out myself”.

At this time, I requested the phone conversation receipt number and stated that I do not think it is appropriate for a representative from the ATO to tell me to figure it out myself, when that is the reason I am calling.

Through an operator error on his behalf he placed me on hold to another department by mistake and then called me back on my personal cell phone, as he was concerned he had hung up on me (I do appreciate the effort to call me back), I decided to stay on hold on my original phone call as I had already committed to 1.5hrs to that call at this point and found it unusual that the “technical difficulty” occurred just after I had requested the call receipt number. This line was eventually answered by a representative I believe was called June who was able to very clearly and quickly explain the issue to me in detail, I am extremely grateful for her assistance and it took her 20 minutes to find my account, see how the payments had occurred, and achieve this explanation.

 

From this experience, your advice to call the ATO for a “detailed account explanation” is only helpful advice to those who are willing to spend 1hr54mins (total) on the phone, and persist pass those representatives who lack basic account knowledge let alone could provide a detailed explanation.

Rgds.