The complete crypto tax guide to

Written by

Nick Christie



last updated on


What is is the first social infused exchange in the world, combining the power of social media and trading in a unique platform. For the Australian crypto investor, this platform is uniquely beneficial.

  • Accessible to all levels: Whether you're a beginner or an expert, has a wide range of tools and resources to help you make informed decisions about your crypto investments.
  • Social aspect: The social aspect of the platform allows users to connect with other investors from around the world, providing a unique opportunity to learn from others and make more informed investment choices.
  • Secure platform: is a secure platform for investing, with cutting-edge security measures in place to protect your investments.

Do you have to pay tax on crypto?

Following the ATO's release of crypto tax guidelines in 2014, it's clear that crypto is taxable.

For Australian taxpayers, this means declaring all worldwide income, including gains and losses made from crypto on

ATO tax treatment of crypto

There are two types of assessable income that your investments are taxed on in Australia:

Capital Gains Tax (CGT): You’ll end up with capital gains whenever you buy a crypto asset, and later sell it for a higher price. Capital gains and losses can result from trades, swaps, gifts and many other transaction types.

Example: You buy Polygon on and later sell it, causing a Capital Gain that you must declare CGT on.

Ordinary Income: You can easily end up earning income from a range of sources such as rewards, airdrops, commissions and many more. These sources of income must be declared on your income tax return.

Example: You generate referral commissions on, causing Ordinary Income which must be declared.

Crypto tax is complex, so be sure you know which documents to keep and how to calculate your taxes. This helps avoid errors that could bring an ATO audit.

Penalties for not declaring tax

The ATO has an annual $3.6 billion budget for administering Australia's tax system. Its Black Economy Taskforce plays a key role in fighting tax evasion, ensuring everyone pays their fair share. Australians who don't declare their taxes face severe consequences, including penalties, interest, fines, and the risk of criminal prosecution for tax evasion.

Investors on who avoid declaring their profits are incurring enormous risks. In Australia, fortunately, we see one of the world's highest tax compliance rates, with more than 93.7% of people fully adhering to tax laws. Those that don't are often quickly approached up by the ATO.

Being late to lodge your taxes can have consequences, damaging your standing with the ATO and the Australian Government, and heightening the risk of audits or reviews. A poor standing with the ATO can also make it tougher to acquire loans or home mortgages.

Does report transactions to the ATO? is a digital currency exchange based in Seychelles.

The ATO has over 100 information sharing agreements, which cover almost every country and tax jurisdiction globally, to ensure no one avoids their tax.Rest-assured, they're no doubt already exchanging information with Seychelles.

In short, the ATO is going to find out about your transaction history on Even if they don't find out about it this year, they'll find out in the very near future.

The last thing you want is the ATO coming after you for years of tax avoidance. That means it's important that you do calculate and declare your crypto gains, otherwise it’s only a matter of time before the ATO comes after you.

ATO record keeping requirements

To complete your crypto taxes each year, there’s some important records that you need to keep. Having these records will help you to calculate and declare your crypto tax, and are also your evidence if you need to prove how your crypto tax was calculated.

The ATO record keeping requirements for crypto require you to keep the following:

  • receipts when you buy, transfer or dispose of crypto assets
  • a record of the date of each transaction
  • a record of what the transaction is for and who the other party is (this can just be their crypto asset address)
  • exchange records
  • a record of the value of the crypto asset in Australian dollars at the time of each transaction
  • records of agent, accountant and legal costs
  • digital wallet records and keys
  • a record of software costs that relate to managing your tax affairs

The ATO has also advised that records should be kept for at least 5 years. Account Statements has made a number of account statements available to ensure you can meet your record keeping requirements. You can follow the account statement export instructions from to download a copy of the files.

You can download the following account statements from

Your crypto tax software may also be used to satisfy the ATO record keeping requirements. Syla has been designed to satisfy Section 121.20 and Section 121.25 of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997, that deals with ATO record keeping requirements.

Syla is an industry-leading crypto tax software that can be used for Syla can be used to record your transactions by File Import. Syla keeps a record of the original source data, in the exact format it appeared on your account in, ensuring you meet your record keeping obligations.

Having your records is just step one, because now you’ll need to calculate the tax outcomes for each and every transaction. You’ll need to make sure you do it accurately, or you’ll be at increased risk from the ATO.

How is crypto taxed on

We all know that crypto is taxed, but the exact tax treatment can vary. Understanding exactly how your different crypto transactions are taxed can not only help you meet your tax obligations, but it can actually help you to make smarter investment decisions.

Important: In the following sections we are considering the tax treatment of an individual investor. If you’re a trader or a different entity such as a Company, Trust or SMSF, your tax treatment may vary.

Buy and sell crypto

Capital Gains

When you buy crypto on, it is a purchase of a CGT asset for tax purposes. Whenever you purchase a CGT asset you must record and track the cost base.

When you later sell crypto, you’ll need to record the proceeds from the sale. By subtracting the original cost base from the proceeds, you'll be able to calculate and declare the resulting capital gain or loss.

The basic idea works like this:

  • If your crypto went up: declare the increase in value as a capital gain.
  • If your crypto went down: report the decrease in value as a capital loss.
  • If you held crypto over 12 months: it’s eligible for the 50% CGT discount.

The calculations for CGT can get very complicated, which is why our tax team wrote an in-depth guide on how to calculate CGT on crypto.


Ordinary Income

The earn program on allows you to generate interest on your crypto holdings. By transferring eligible crypto into the earn program, you will generate regular interest payments that add to your crypto holdings. You can think of it like earning interest in a bank account, except for your crypto.

Just like interest in your bank account, you must also calculate and declare the crypto that you earned in the earn program. For each crypto payout, you'll need to calculate the market value in AUD and declare it as ordinary income in your tax return. You’ll also need to track the cost base of the CGT asset, so you can declare the capital gain or loss when you sell it in the future.

Tracking daily crypto earn payouts can be a chore, and it’s easy to end up with hundreds, if not thousands of transactions, all of which are taxable. When selecting crypto tax software, make sure you check the cost-effectiveness based on the number of transactions you have, and pick one that can handle thousands for an affordable price.

Affiliate program

Ordinary Income offers a crypto affiliate program. As a participant in this program, you can earn rewards by referring new customers to Whenever someone signs up for using your referral link and begins trading, you'll receive a commission based on a percentage of the trading fees generated, which gets credited directly to your Swyftx account.

Any income earned through the affiliate program must be reported for tax purposes. The ATO views these earnings as income, similar to income from a job or other business activity. If the commission is paid in crypto, its value in AUD at the time of receipt must be reported. This income will be subject to your regular income tax rate.

It's important to keep track of all your affiliate earnings for accurate reporting during the tax season. Document the date of each commission, the amount in AUD, and any transaction details. This information is crucial for accurately declaring the income in your tax return. Be mindful that cryptocurrency values can fluctuate, so it's important to record the AUD value at the time of earning the commission.


Ordinary Income

Crypto derivatives are financial instruments whose value is derived from the price of an underlying cryptocurrency. They are distinct from actual cryptocurrencies and are designed to allow investors to speculate on price movements without owning the actual asset.

You can trade the following types of derivatives on

  • Futures
  • Perpetual Futures

In Australia, the tax treatment of crypto derivatives is very different to the tax treatment of actual crypto assets.

When you trade derivative contracts for profit, the resulting gains or losses are generally treated as ordinary income. The most import difference you need to know, is that derivatives are not eligible for the CGT discount.

Margin trading

Capital Gains

Margin trading on allows you to borrow fiat or crypto to use in your trading. Margin trading allows you to buy or sell more than you normally would.

By borrowing crypto and selling it, you can short the market and profit from a drop in price. By borrowing fiat and using it to buy crypto, you can go long and profit from an increase in price.f

Margin trading is treated differently to derivative contracts such as futures. The reason for the difference in tax treatment is because when margin trading, you do own the actual asset

Because you own the asset when margin trading, your crypto is still subject to Capital Gains Tax when you acquired it for an investment purpose. It’s even possible for your crypto to be eligible for the CGT discount if you held it over 12 months.

Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs)

Capital Gains


NFTs (non-fungible tokens) are similar to other cryptocurrencies, but differ in one regard, referred to as fungibility, which simply means that each NFT is individually unique and has it's own properties and corresponding market value.

In Australia, the ATO treats NFTs as CGT assets that subject to Capital Gains Tax (CGT). It works exactly the same as CGT for traditional cryptocurrencies, where any gain made from the sale of an NFT is taxable and must be declared.

Taxing NFTs does however present some practical challenges. Due to their inherent uniqueness, each NFT has its own individual market value, which isn't readily available. This uniqueness makes tax calculations complex, as they often rely on market value data.

NFTs also don't allow for the use of parcel matching algorithms that could optimise for lower taxes. When an NFT is sold, you can’t pick and choose which NFT was sold, the exact asset sold is already known.

GST: For those registered for GST (Goods and Services Tax), it is important to note that NFTs are not classified as a digital currency for GST purposes and are instead subject to standard GST rules.

How to do your taxes

By now, you've likely realised there can be a lot to crypto tax, and getting it done correctly can be tricky. Let’s find out how you can actually get your tax sorted.

ATO tax lodgement deadline

Our Australian financial year starts on the 1 July and ends on the 30 June each year, and you can prepare and lodge your tax return anytime after the 30 June up to 31 October.

The tax deadline for individual taxpayers is 31 October. Once you go past that date, your tax return is overdue, and your risk of penalties is increasing.

There is one way that you can easily extend your lodgement deadline though. You can receive an extended lodgement deadline till 15 May when lodging through a registered tax agent.

Some taxpayers find themselves with years of overdue tax returns. Unfortunately, the problem won’t just go away by ignoring it, and it’s only getting bigger in the meantime. With the ATO no doubt using the data collected from more effectively each year, it’s only a matter of time before they catch up with you.

If you do have overdue tax returns, then it’s always worth working with a good tax accountant. They’ll be able to help you get your tax affairs back up to date. In many cases, investors can even end up receiving tax refunds from years of unlodged tax returns.

Self-lodge vs using an Accountant

When lodging your tax return, there’s two ways to go about it. Self-lodge yourself through myTax (myGov), or by lodging through a tax agent.

Self-lodging your tax return is definitely more affordable, as it means you don’t have to pay for an accountant. However, you’ll need to be much more careful about how you calculate and declare your tax outcomes. Follow our comprehensive guide to self-lodging your crypto tax.

Using an Accountant does cost more, but it will save you a lot of headache, and you won’t have to worry whether your tax return was done correctly. You’ll also have someone you can ask questions and get tax advice from. If your crypto activity is particularly complex, then it might be worth looking at a crypto tax specialist to help you.

Regardless of which approach you take, you’ll need some type of tax software for recording your crypto transactions and calculating the tax outcomes.

If you’re an Australian taxpayer, then it’s advisable to use tax software built specifically for Australia, otherwise the tax calculations may not be done correctly, putting you at risk with the ATO

How to select crypto tax software

When it comes to managing crypto taxes in Australia, choosing the right software is crucial for compliance and ease of use.

Tax regulations and compliance requirements vary significantly across jurisdictions, and what works in one country may not be suitable in another. Australian crypto investors need tax software that is specifically tailored to the unique aspects of Australian tax law. It's essential that the software not only calculates these taxes accurately but also updates its tax logic as tax laws evolve.

Ensure the crypto tax software is built specifically for Australia. Otherwise you may declare your tax incorrectly or overpay more tax than required.

You should also check for the software’s ability to integrate with popular Australian and international crypto exchanges. Having good support for is a must, but you should also consider any other platforms you trade on.

Quality integrations are vital for maintaining accurate and complete records of all your crypto activities.

Crypto tax is complex, so having software that is user-friendly and intuitive will be a big help. Look for software that generates detailed, ATO-compliant reports which can be directly used for tax filings or shared with your accountant. You should also consider the level of customer support offered, and whether it's actually coming from an Australian support team.

If you don't have tax software for your crypto yet, then sign up for an account with Syla. It's the only tax software built exclusively for Australian crypto investors, and it has an industry-leading tax integration for

Using crypto tax software

Crypto tax software is designed to make doing your crypto taxes much simpler. The software will calculate all the tax outcomes for you, so you only need to import your transactions, make any edits as required, and download your final crypto tax report. All the complicated tax calculations are automatically done for you.

It’s really easy using Syla to do your crypto tax:

  1. Get started with a free account.
  2. Add as a data source and import your transactions.
  3. Add any other platforms and wallets.
  4. Review your transactions.
  5. Download your Crypto Tax Report.

Syla does all the heavy lifting for you. Your transactions will be imported and the tax calculations will be done for you. When using LTFO tax optimisation you can even achieve lower tax outcomes than you normally would.

Once you've downloaded your crypto tax report from Syla, you can either give it to your tax agent, or you can use it to self-lodge your own tax return.

Importing transactions from

The first step to getting your crypto tax sorted is to import your transactions from

Syla has an industry-leading tax integration with You can use the File Import in Syla.

File Import

Using a File Import is an effective way to import all your transactions on as it’s safe and easy to do.

If you get stuck, we also have an Assisted File Import process.

Download your crypto tax report

Once you have all your transactions imported into Syla, you can view them, make edits if needed and import any other Data Sources that you have.

After you’re happy with everything, you can download your Crypto Tax Report.

ATO crypto tax report

Tax software for

It's very difficult to correctly calculate all the tax outcomes of your crypto by hand unless you're a tax accountant.

If you are using a tax accountant, then you probably don’t want them doing it by hand either, as it's going to take a long time and cost a lot.

That’s where using crypto tax software can save you a lot of time and money, that you'd rather spend doing something else. 😊

Syla is the only crypto tax software designed specifically and only for Australia. Syla not only calculates all your tax outcomes to ensure you are ATO compliant, but it also optimises your tax to ensure you pay the lowest crypto tax legally possible, saving you both time and money.

  • Best value - $59 AUD for 10,000 transactions.
  • Absolute certainty - purpose-built for Australian tax law.
  • Maximise your tax savings - using Syla's proprietary LTFO method.

👉 Get started for free.


The information in this article reflects our understanding of existing legislation, proposed legislation, rulings and other tax law, as at the date of issue. In some cases, the information has been provided to us by third parties. While it is believed the information is accurate and reliable, this is not guaranteed in any way.

The information provided in this article is purely factual in nature and does not constitute tax advice, financial product advice or legal advice. The information is not, nor is it intended to be, comprehensive or a substitute for professional advice on specific circumstances. If you require professional advice that takes into account your particular circumstances, you should consult an appropriate professional.

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