A tax clinic run by accounting students from Charles Darwin University (CDU) will provide free tax services to low-income people, non-profit organizations and migrants in the Northern Territory this tax season.
The CDU Tax Clinic operates in partnership with local accountancy agency SAMAF Accountants and Consultants and is supported by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) which has approved the program for a further three years until 2024.
This year, the tax clinic has expanded its online services to more remote areas of the territory, including the Barkly area, Tennant Creek, Daily Rivers and other physically inaccessible communities.
Raul David, CDU accounting lecturer at the Asia Pacific College of Business and Law, leads the program and helps his students gain experience through the clinic.
“We understand that for most Territorians, tax time is a daunting time,” David said.
“Many people, including micro and small businesses and especially those in vulnerable situations, could not afford to hire tax accountants to run their businesses.”
“Our aim is to help our NT community and to provide real practical work experience for our CDU Accounting students, enabling them to be job ready upon completion of their qualifications.”
The team will set up a clinic with some local non-profit organisations, including STEPS NT and Melaleuca Australia for humanitarian participants, and the Australian Red Cross for clients from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.
Services will be provided in various languages, such as English, Urdu, Estonian, Russian, Kuchi, Gujarati, Swahili, Lingala, Cantonese, Mandarin, Vietnamese and Arabic.
Eligible individuals include Territorians with taxable income of $60,000 and less as well as small businesses, nonprofits and small charities.
The CDU Tax Clinic will operate from the CDU Waterfront Campus from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. every Tuesday and Wednesday from July 12 through October 29 and the CDU Casuarina Campus Open House on August 28.
The clinic will also be held in Katherine at Katherine Oasis Mall August 16-17 and Alice Springs at Yeperenye Mall August 23-24 and October 11-12.
Reservations for online meetings can be arranged for remote Territorians.
Applications can be made online at www.cdu.edu.au/free-tax-clinic and a meeting with Tax Clinic staff will be arranged to discuss tax matters in detail.