Charitable institutions

Charitable institutions registered under the Taxation Administration Act 2001 may be exempt from paying duties, land tax or payroll tax.

These are the steps for receiving an exemption.

  1. Confirm that your institution is eligible to be registered.
  2. Apply to become registered as a charitable institution.
  3. Claim the relevant exemption for duties, payroll tax or land tax.

If you are already registered as a charitable institution and need a copy of your notice of registration, email us with your organisation’s name, ABN and client number (if known) and we will send a replacement notice. We may first ask you for a copy of your current constitution and information about your current activities in order to verify that you are still eligible for registration.

Eligible institutions

The following organisations may be registered as charitable institutions:

  • religious bodies
  • public benevolent institutions
  • universities and university colleges (not charitable institutions for payroll tax)
  • primary and secondary schools
  • kindergartens
  • institutions that
    • mainly care for sick, aged or infirm persons
    • relieve poverty
    • provide full-time care for children (e.g. foster homes)
    • are primarily charitable or for the public good (the principal object or pursuit must not be leisure, recreational, social or sporting).

How to apply

To become a registered charitable institution, you must:

  • complete an application for registration (Form TA3)
  • provide supporting information, including
    • a copy of the organisation's constituting documents (such as constitution, rules of association, memorandum of understanding, trust deed) with evidence of its effective date
    • a certificate of incorporation (if applicable)
    • details of the organisation's current or proposed activities
    • details of fees charged for the organisation's activities
    • a statement of doctrine or belief (religious bodies only)
    • any other supporting documentation, such as:
      • a mission statement
      • an annual report
      • other relevant published information.

To be registered as a charitable institution (other than as a religious body, a university or a university college), an organisation’s constitution must state that:

  • all income and property are used solely for promoting its objectives
  • no part of the income and property will be distributed to members
  • on its dissolution, the remaining assets will be transferred to:
    • an institution that is able to be registered as a charitable institution under the Taxation Administration Act
      or
    • an institution or purpose the Commissioner of State Revenue is satisfied is charitable or promotes the public good.

After applying

We will send you a letter confirming we have received your application.

It can take up to 30 working days to process registration applications.

If your application is approved, we will give you a notice of registration stating:

  • the date your institution was registered
  • any other information about the registration.

Your registration as a charitable institution continues unless your circumstances change and you are no longer eligible to be registered—you must notify us in writing within 28 days if this happens.

If your application is refused, we will give you an information notice explaining the decision.

How to claim the exemption

When you have your notice of registration, you can then claim the relevant exemption for:

For more information, see the following public rulings: