Skip to content
Queensland Government - Queensland Revenue Office
Queensland Government - Queensland Revenue Office

Payroll tax obligations and how to comply

Topics on this page

    As a Queensland employer, you have various payroll tax obligations and entitlements.


    Awareness of your obligations helps you:

    • lodge your returns and pay on time
    • avoid reassessment
    • avoid unpaid tax interest (UTI) and penalty tax
    • avoid committing an offence.

    These rights and obligations are provided for in the following legislation:

    • Payroll Tax Act 1971
    • Payroll Tax Regulation 2019
    • Taxation Administration Act 2001
    • Taxation Administration Regulation 2022
    • Payroll tax (Transitional) Regulation 2022.

    Additional obligations may apply if we need to investigate your payroll tax activities.

    How to comply

    You must register for payroll tax if you:

    • pay Australian taxable wages that are above the threshold
    • pay taxable wages in Queensland. You must register within 7 days after the end of the month in which your wages (or your group wages) exceed the threshold.

    Once registered, you must lodge returns for your calculated payroll tax liability.

    When you lodge a return, you must pay any tax and other amounts owing (if applicable) by the due date. If you fail to lodge a return by the due date, you may receive a default assessment.

    If your employer status changes, or if you stop employing, you must lodge a final return. You might also need to reconcile your mental health levy.

    If you find an error in a return after it is lodged, you can make corrections in QRO Online and request a reassessment. Alternatively, email us at

    You must advise us within 30 days after becoming aware of an error that affects your liability.

    Record keeping

    You must keep proper records when self-assessing your payroll tax liability to produce them when required.

    To meet your record keeping obligations, you must:

    • keep your records readily available for 5 years
    • write your records in English
    • have the amounts expressed in Australian currency (or have the capability to convert them into the required form).

    We may need to translate or convert any information we believe is relevant to assess your liability, regardless of who holds the information.

    Not meeting these obligations is an offence. It is also an offence to wilfully damage or destroy records.

    Privacy and confidentiality

    We protect your information under our privacy and confidentiality provisions.

    All your information and records (electronic and hardcopy) are protected by law, and are maintained in accordance with the:

    Also consider…

    Last updated: 28 November 2023