Australia: How much Is My Net Salary? - Medicare Levy and Net (Part 3)

Medicare gives Australian residents (permanent residents and citizens) access to healthcare. It is partly funded by the Medicare levy which is 2% of your taxable income. You pay a medicare levy in addition to the tax you pay on your taxable income. You'll know that when you receive your NOA (notice of assessment). Below is a sample NOA I got from the web and since we haven't file any yet, I can't verify the proper presentation. I think it will be similar with the NOA in Singapore where it will show the calculation and tax payable. In the Philippines, we do not have any NOA since we have the so called 'substituted filing' with some exceptions (Professionals whose income and/or have multiple sources of income and those who exceeds the threshold needs to file an annual ITR). 

You may get a reduction or exemption from paying the Medicare levy depending on your (hohusehold) income and it will be determined from the information you provide in your tax return.

You may also have to pay the Medicare Levy Surcharge if you don't have an appropriate level of private patient hospital cover (insurance) and who earn above a certain income. The base income threshold is $90,000 for singles and $180,000 for families. But even if your household income is below the threshold, it is still recommended you avail a private health insurance to give you more benefits like shorter wait times, better quality of care and peace of mind. Also, if you are more than 31 and plan to take one, you'll incur a lifetime health cover loading on top of the premium. Depending on the plan chosen, visits to dentists and cost of glasses will be subsidised because these are not covered by Medicare. Also, in states other than Queensland and Tasmania, ambulance is not free so you have to pay either out of pocket or private health insurance. Need to highlight this because most of us think it's free but it is not. You'll have a private health insurance rebate from ATO if you have one. This rebate is income tested so if you have a higher income, your rebate entitlement may be reduced or you may not be entitled to any rebate at all.

When you receive a NOA, you should check everything is correct. That's why you have to keep copies of your payslips and banks statements for future references.

Generally, unless you are using an electronic fund transfer, the bottom section of the NOA will be either a refund cheque or a payment advice or a statement of account with those attachments.

Automated Assessment. If you receive an automated assessment, you won't need to submit a tax return or refund form.

Lodging Tax Return. If you are lodging your own tax return, it is due by October 31. MyTax (accessed through mygov under Tax>Lodgements>Income Tax) is the quick, easy, safe and secure way to lodge your tax return online.

How much is my net salary?
So now that we know the things that we need to pay to the government aside from taxes, how much is your net salary then? Refer to this link Input your expected salary whether annually, fortnightly, weekly or hourly and whether it is inclusive of super or not. You'll know how much is your net salary every payday. However, if you have chosen a 'Tax Free Threshold' in the form, you may pay additional tax at year end. Hence, you also need to budget for additional taxes to be paid at year end plus Medicare levy. You can refer to this link to have an idea on your annual payables (taxes and medicare)

In Short - Gross Pay exc of super - Super (9.5%) - Taxes - Medicare levy (2%) = Take Home Pay

*All those in blue are linked to their respective websites. Click for more information.
*The decision to increase the medicare levy to 2.5% was scraped.


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