Navigating Christmas Parties and Gift Tax:
A Guide for Businesses

As the festive season approaches, businesses are gearing up for Christmas parties and gift-giving to celebrate the spirit of the holidays. However, it’s essential to be aware of the tax implications associated with these festivities. Here’s a comprehensive guide to understanding the tax considerations for Christmas parties and gifts in the corporate world.


Christmas Parties:

1. On Business Premises for Employees:

  • If your business hosts a Christmas party on a working day and confines the celebration to your premises exclusively for current employees, you’re in the clear from fringe benefits tax (FBT) for the provided food and drink.

2. Off Business Premises or Involving Associates:

  • When the party extends beyond your business premises or includes associates of employees (e.g., their partners), you won’t incur FBT if the event qualifies as a minor benefit. A minor benefit is defined by a per-person cost of less than $300, and it must be deemed unreasonable to classify it as a fringe benefit.

3. Involving Clients:

  • Should your Christmas party extend its invitation to clients, the costs related to their attendance does not attract FBT.

Christmas Gifts:

1. Employee Gifts:

  • Providing your employees with Christmas gifts won’t trigger FBT as long as the value of each gift remains below $300 per person. This exemption holds if considering it as a fringe benefit would be deemed unreasonable.


Important Note:

  • If your Christmas party falls outside the scope of FBT, keep in mind that you cannot claim income tax deductions for the incurred party expenses.

In conclusion, while spreading holiday cheer within the workplace is encouraged, being mindful of tax regulations ensures a festive season free from unexpected financial implications. As businesses engage in the joyous festivities, understanding and adhering to these guidelines will help navigate the tax landscape seamlessly.

Wishing you a tax-savvy and joy-filled holiday season!

*Information sourced from the ATO.
*This is general advice only, please contact us or your accountant regarding your specific circumstances.