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Paper on Volunteer Reimbursements and Tax Welcomed

Paper on Volunteer Reimbursements and Tax Welcomed

Volunteering New Zealand has welcomed the release of Inland Revenue’s Issues Paper on the tax treatment of volunteers’ reimbursements.

The paper has been released with the support of Finance Minister Michael Cullen and Revenue Minister Peter Dunne.

“There is a need for the tax law on these payments to be clear, simple to administer and equitable and the Issues Paper enables community input on what the desirable solutions might be,” said Tim Burns, Executive Director of Volunteering NZ.

The paper identifies that there is great uncertainty among volunteers and the organisations they volunteer for about how they should manage their tax obligations.

“This is certainly true and in our experience there has also been differing interpretations among Inland Revenue staff,” said Tim Burns.

“One problem is that tax law is effectively silent on how to treat reimbursement payments to volunteers”.

The Issues Paper discusses a range of options for possible solutions and invites feedback from volunteers and their organisations. The deadline for the submissions is 14 December.

“While this is a short period in which to respond, it is important that there is widespread response and equally importantly there are constructive proposals on how the law should deal with reimbursement payments,” said Mr Burns

“It is to be hoped that appropriate tax legislation will result which has the support of all of Parliament.”

Volunteering NZ is appreciative of Revenue Minister Peter Dunne’s work to ensure the issue is being addressed by the Government.


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