Tax Obligations of a Single Parent as a Temporary Resident



I am a single Mother of three children under the age of 10 years old. Our residential status is Temporary Residents. I work as a Sole Trader: Uber Driver and Menulog Courier for more than 14 hours every day, sometimes 18 hours, simply to deliver the essentials for my children. In FY 2020 my estimated taxable income is $53 000. According to ATO Tax Calculator I must pay around $8 000 tax. I do not have any savings. I cannot pay my tax. Then I will be in debt.

Our home rent is $400/week which is $20 800 for the year. Our utility bills are average of $7 000, total essential expenses: $27 800.

$53 000-$27 800 = $25 200.

$25 200 : 52 (weeks) = 484.60/weekly

$484.60 : 4 (1 adult and 3 children) = $121.15/person

Family Tax Benefit provides the maximum rate for each child per fortnight of $189.56. My children and I, each of us (no matter I am an adult) have 121.15 × 2= $242.30 per fortnight.

The Poverty line in Australia is $457/week for a single adult. My 3 children and I survive every week with $484.60!!!

According to Sydney Household Income Eligibility Limits the Very Low Income for Single + 3 is $53 800.

But I still must pay tax???! How fair?!

Due to our residential Family Tax benefit or any other social support offered by Australian Social Security Code.

I qualify for being an Australian Resident for tax purposes but I do not meet the eligible criteria of the Australian Security Code.

It is very unjust and unfair that I must pay more than I earn. I do not want the social benefits but please do not take away the food from my children. I chose to work very much longer hours to deliver everything they need and I do do.

The Australian Government and Tax Office do not consider (as example might be exemptions in the Tax Return when the case is a Single Parent Temporary Resident) my 3 children as part of me, in anyway.

According to me and based on the research I have conducted, and the outcomes of contacting the Taxation Ombudsman and Commissioner, and ATO as an authority...there is not an existing legislation within my case, situation and circumstances.

In the end due to my residential status as Temporary Resident, I as a Single Mother of 3 children pay the same tax amount as an individual who does not have any children.

How fair is that? Where is the justice?

Board response

Hi Tankovateodora,

Thank you for bringing your concerns to the attention of the Board. We have passed your idea on to the Treasury for their consideration and will continue to give regard to your post should it relate to any of the Board’s future work.

We would also like to share some links with you that you may find useful:

The National Debt Helpline provides a free and confidential financial counselling service and may be able to provide you with some immediate advice. Their phone number is 1800-007-007.

Thank you again for submitting your idea and we wish you all the best.