Simon's Guide to Doing Taxes
As late as yesterday, the 27th, some people I know are just starting to fill out their forms. Talk about cutting it close. But I suppose it’s the Malaysian-culture of doing everything last minute, and then blame it on insufficient time given by the authorities.
Despite what you hear, filling out tax forms is actually very easy, especially if you’re an entry-level employee (where most people start). Things start getting knotty when you’re income rises. Then you’ll need ways to cut down on the deductible income – EPF, life insurance, medical bills, book receipts, etc.
Sounds complicated? Not really. Here’s a simple step by step flowchart for doing your taxes:
Check the following questions:
- Do you make more than the minimum taxable income (I think its RM2,500pm)?
If you answered YES to all of the above, then go to Step 2. If not, keep waiting.
Has your company issued the EA form yet? This applies to ALL the companies you worked for last year.
(By the way, if you worked for more than 2 companies last year, that makes you a job-hopper…)
If the answer is YES, then go to Step 3. If not, go back to Step 1.
Have any of your efficient friends/colleagues done their taxes yet?
If the answer is YES, suck up to him/her big time and get him/her to guide you through it. Then go to Step 5.
If the answer is NO, then looks like you’re on your own. Go to Step 4.
Do the following (and do it again before asking any dumb questions):
- Read the attached handbook (they didn’t send it to you for fun).
- Read the FAQ on the LHDN website.
- Try out all those spam e-mails with attached ‘automated tax calculator’ spreadsheets.
- Attend any free seminars by audit firms/churches/YMCA/self help gurus/fortune tellers on how to do your taxes.Some can even teach you to save million of dollars. (But seeing that its already mid-April, these all would probably be over by now...)
- Dig all your files, drawers, rubbish bins, trouser pockets and hamster cage for receipts, accounts, acknowledgement slips, etc. The more of these you find, the less you have to pay in taxes.
- Or if you’re lazy like me, get your wife to do all of the above.
When you’re done (hopefully, it’s still not May 1st yet), go to Step 5.
- Check your calculations. With a calculator.
- If, like me, you owe them some money (you poor sod), curse, swear, gripe, moan, then write a check and post it to the collection centre (or direct transfer from the ATM).
- If they owe you money, curse, swear, gripe, moan and bitch about it.
- Go to Step 6.
- Complete your form. Keep a copy (and try not to use the office copier).
Finally, forget about it until April next year again.
Back to main page.