Land tax assessment errors and omissions
We issue annual land tax assessments to owners of Victorian land. Depending on how you own land, you may receive more than one land tax assessment.
Your land tax assessment should be correct. It includes a Statement of Lands you own at midnight 31 December and should show:
- Whether you are being assessed as an individual, a joint ownership, trustee of a trust and/or an absentee owner.
- All the Victorian land you own, including land you own jointly with others, and/or have a notified beneficial interest in, under a trust.
- Any applicable exemptions.
If there are any errors or omissions on your assessment(s), we need to know.
You must notify us of any incorrect details and changes in the way you own land within a certain time to prevent a notification default under the Taxation Administration Act 1997. If this default happens, you may be liable for penalty tax on the additional amount that would have been assessed had you notified us of the issue in time.
Land errors and omissions
You must notify us within 60 days your assessment's issue date if you:
- Receive more than one assessment for different lands which you own by yourself.
- Own land which has not been included on your assessment.
- Received an exemption which you are not entitled.
- Received an assessment that does not reflect that you are a trustee or an absentee owner.
You must tell us regardless of whether you own the land individually, on trust, or jointly with others. If you do not comply with the time requirement, penalty tax may apply.
Receiving more than one assessment
We assess individuals, joint ownerships and trustees separately.
Each year, you should receive only one assessment listing all of the land you own, whether alone, with others and/or where you have notified beneficial interest in a trust.
While you should receive only one individual assessment, but you receive more than one assessment if you own land with others or hold land on trust.
If you receive more than one individual assessment you need to tell us.
Example 1: Mr Smith must contact us
Alexander Smith is the sole owner of 3 Park Lane and 7 Fleet Street.
He receives two separate assessments; one for 3 Park Lane under the name of Alexander Smith and another for 7 Fleet Street under the name Alex Smith.
Mr Smith should contact us within 60 days of receiving his assessments because all the land he owns individually should be included on the same assessment and under the same name.
If you own land with others, you are a joint owner. We assess jointly owned land in two stages:
- Joint ownership assessment
We assess all joint owners together on all of their jointly owned land as though they were one person.
- Individual assessment
We assess each owner individually on all the taxable lands they own, in any capacity, and note their interest in any jointly owned land.
The joint ownership assessment lists all joint owners and includes a Statement of Lands for all land jointly owned by all the listed owners. We send this assessment to one of the joint owners on behalf of all the owners.
You may therefore receive an individual assessment and, if you own land with others, a joint ownership assessment on behalf of all joint owners.
However, if the joint ownership receives more than one assessment, they should contact us.
Example 2: Mr McEvoy does not need to not contact us
Tim McEvoy owns two properties: 2 Bond Street by himself and 4 Paddington Lane jointly owned with Anna Rossi.
Tim receives two assessments; a joint ownership assessment for Tim and Anna listing and assessing Paddington Lane and an individual assessment for himself listing Bond Street and his interest in Paddington Lane.
Mr McEvoy does not need to contact us.
You should receive a separate trust assessment for each trust you act for. Each assessment should list all the land(s) held for the particular trust.
You do not need to notify us unless we have issued more than one assessment for the same trust or land you hold on trust appears on your individual assessment.
Example 3: Mr Georgiou does not need to not contact us
Paul Georgiou owns three properties: 6 Main Street in his own name, and 15 Charles Street and 4 Albert Avenue as trustee for the Georgiou Family Trust.
He receives two assessments; an individual assessment for 6 Main Street and a trust assessment for 15 Charles Street and 4 Albert Avenue as trustee for the Georgiou Family Trust.
Mr Georgiou does not need to contact us as he has been correctly assessed.
Your land tax assessment includes a Statement of Lands listing all the land you own at midnight on 31 December. If the statement does not list all the land you own in the capacity we are assessing you, your assessment is incorrect and must be amended.
You should complete and lodge our online SmartForm to request a change to your assessment or you may face penalties. We cannot process this change over the phone.
Example 4: Mr Nguyen must contact us
Van Nguyen owns two investment properties: 16 View Street and 21 Union Avenue. He also owns a commercial property, 3 Spring Street, with Jessica Do.
Mr Nguyen receives his individual assessment but it only lists View Street.
Mr Nguyen must contact us and tell us that his assessment is missing 21 Union Avenue and 3 Spring Street.
The Statement of Lands in your assessment also lists any exemptions applied to your land.
These exemptions are listed as codes which are explained in the summary attached to your assessment. Our website has more information on each of the exemptions.
You can only claim an exemption if you meet the conditions that apply to it. If you are not entitled to receive an exemption that is included in your notice, you must complete and lodge our online SmartForm.
Example 5: Ms Singh must contact us
Chandra Singh owns two investment properties: 4 Mayfair Street and 21 Oxford Street. She receives an assessment listing both properties but showing Oxford Street exempt as her principal place of residence (PPR).
Ms Singh has not used Oxford Street as her PPR so it is not eligible for the PPR exemption. She must contact us.
If you own land as an absentee owner or under a trust arrangement, you need to tell us within specified time frames about certain issues to avoid penalties.
If you hold land on trust, you need to have notified us either by 31 December 2005 or within a month of acquiring the land. Each trust will receive its own land tax assessment.
Trustees must also notify us in writing within one month if:
- There is a change in the type of trust (for example, if a discretionary trust changes to a fixed trust).
- There is a change in the beneficial interest(s) of a fixed trust where a notification of beneficial interest is in force.
- There is a change of unit holdings in a unit trust where a notification of unit holdings in the trust is in force.
- The nominated principal place of residence (PPR) beneficiary stops using the trust land as their PPR.
Personal representatives will hold the assets of a deceased estate in an administration trust. If the estate owns land in Victoria, the personal representative must notify us within one month of:
- commencing the administration of the deceased estate, and
- completing the administration of the deceased estate.
If you have not told us about any of these things, you should notify us as soon as possible, otherwise penalties may apply.
Once you have notified us, we will assume that your existing status is current unless you tell us otherwise. Your land tax assessments will include the absentee owner surcharge until you update your status.
Failing to notify us
A notification default under the Taxation Administration Act 1997 is triggered when you do not notify us:
- Within 60 days of your assessment that there is an error or omission with the lands that you own.
- Within one month of acquiring land on trust.
- Within one month of there being a change in your trust arrangement.
- Before 15 January that you were an absentee owner as at 31 December of the previous year.
When a notification default occurs, you may be liable for penalty tax on the additional amount that would have been assessed had you notified us of the issue in time.
This may be penalty tax of:
- 5 per cent if you voluntarily tell us of the correct details before we start investigating you.
- 20 per cent if you tell us you tell us of the correct details after we start an investigation.
- Up to 90 per cent if we believe that you intentionally disregarded the law and hindered our investigation.