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Tax Facts - Capital Gains Tax

Capital gains tax (CGT) is the tax you pay on a capital gain. It is not a separate tax, but part of your income tax.

The most usual way to make a capital gain or loss is to sell assets like real estate, shares or managed fund investments.

Capital gains tax came into effect on 20 September 1985. All assets you have acquired since this date are subject to the CGT rules including options, rights and business goodwill (unless specific exclusions apply).


If you are an individual, some assets may be exempt from CGT, including:

  • Your main residence
  • Your car, motorcycle or similar vehicle
  • Assets for personal use that you acquired for $10,000 or less

There are other exemptions, rollovers, and concessions that may allow you to ignore, defer or reduce your capital gain or capital loss. In some situations using the indexation and discount methods to calculate your capital gain can also reduce this.


If you are an Australian resident, CGT applies to your assets anywhere in the world.

For foreign residents, CGT applies to taxable Australian property.

MORE: See the Capital Gains Tax Essentials section of the ATO website.

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