The Department of Human Services (DHS) warns Family Tax Benefit (FTB) recipients that if they have not lodged their 2013-14 tax return, they risk paying back benefits that have already been spent.
Recipients of the FTB need to be disclose income for each year. This income is usually confirmed through the lodgement of the tax return since all government agencies share their data.
This is necessary since DHS (Centrelink) makes FTB payments based on an estimation of family income at the start of a financial year, and then balance this against the actual level of income once the relevant financial year closes, and adjusts assistance payments accordingly.
The end result is either a top-up payment, or an overpayment amount that will need to be paid back. Recovering overpayments can be made via adjustments to future assistance payments or even by accessing any tax refund. Adjustments to future assistance payments may also be made at this stage.
DHS has indicated that the deadline to clean up your tax affairs is during November.