Claiming expenses for GST: What information must a tax invoice show?

Author: Michael Levertoff

What information must a tax invoice show?

If you want to claim an expense, make sure the business you are purchasing from issues you with a valid tax invoice - or it can't beĀ  claimed.

EFTPOS receipts are not generally acceptable unless they follow the guidelines below. It is always good practice to get in the habit of asking theĀ supplier for a valid tax invoice.

A tax invoice:

  • shows the GST on the goods and services provided
  • must be in New Zealand currency, and
  • must be original. The GST registered supplier can only issue one original tax invoice for each taxable supply. If the purchaser loses the invoice, the supplier may issue a copy. It must be clearly marked "copy only".

Important

If you supply goods and services to another GST-registered person, you must provide a tax invoice within 28 days of the purchaser asking for one. It is an offence if you don't supply one after such a request and you may be charged penalties.

The information a tax invoice must show depends on the value of the goods and services supplied. We refer to the required information as "standards". Different standards are required for different tax invoices:

Tax invoice for supplies worth more than $1,000

For supplies worth more than $1,000 (including GST), the tax invoice must clearly show:

  • the words "tax invoice" in a prominent place
  • the name (or trade name) and GST number of the supplier
  • the name and address of the recipient of the supply
  • the date the invoice was issued
  • a description of the goods and/or services supplied
  • the quantity or volume of the goods and/or services supplied.
    Examples: litres of petrol, hours of labour, kilos of potatoes etc.

It must also have either:

  • the amount, excluding tax, charged for the supply
  • the GST and the total amount payable for the supply, or
  • a statement that GST is included in the final price if it has been.

Important

If the invoice covers a number of supplies which add up to more than $1,000, all the details listed above are needed.

Additional information

An example of a tax invoice for supplies worth more than $1,000

Tax invoice for supplies worth between $50 and $1,000

For supplies worth between $50 and $1,000 (including GST), a simplified tax invoice is acceptable. It must clearly show:

  • the words "tax invoice" in a prominent place
  • the name and GST number of the supplier
  • the date the tax invoice was issued
  • a description of the goods and/or services supplied
  • the total amount payable for the supply, and
  • a statement that GST is included.

Note

If you don't have a tax invoice, you can't claim a credit on supplies over $50.

Supplies of $50 or less

A tax invoice is not needed for supplies of $50 or less (including GST). However, it is best practice to keep records for these purchases, such as invoices, vouchers or receipts. At a minimum, record the date, description, cost and supplier of all purchases.

Note

You'll also need these details if you are going to make a claim for income tax purposes.

If you need further assistance please Ask a question.