The first quarter of the year is usually a time where most Malaysians dread filing their taxes and are cracking their heads over how to do it. As a Malaysian, I am also one of those that scrambles at the last minute to file my taxes. Today, we won’t need to go into the detailed steps to file your taxes.

Instead, we will share some important facts to take note of while filing your taxes!


Individual vs Joint Assessment

Individual and joint assessment (spouse only) have their own advantages and disadvantages depending on the couple’s income. Generally, individual assessment is always more ideal if both husband and wife are high income earners. In this case, it is also more worthwhile to claim child relief under the spouse with higher income.

On the other hand, if one of the spouse is either earning little or not working, it will be ideal for both spouses to opt for joint assessment. This allows them to leverage for an additional spouse relief of RM 3,000. Also, if one of the spouse is an entrepreneur but experiencing business losses, joint assessments will be better to help maximize on the business losses relief.


Tax Reliefs for Year of Assessment 2017/2018

Insurance Relief
Under the relief of (a) EPF and Life Insurance and (b) Education and Medical Insurance, you are not supposed to deduct the whole amount of insurance premium paid for the year from your chargeable income. There is actually a breakdown according to the riders (benefits) for each plan and they are clearly stated in Statement Of Life Assurance Premium Paid (SLAPP). This statement is to be requested from your insurance provider or agent.

Purchase of Sports Equipment Relief
Equipment for any sports activity as defined under the Sports Development Act 1997 are claimable. However, this does not include sports attire and sports shoes.

Complete Medical Examination for Self, Spouse & Child Relief
To qualify for this relief, do take note that the medical examination done must be a COMPLETE & DETAILED screening. Normal blood test at Pathlab or Gribbles does not qualify. Do a quick check with the clinic or hospital if the medical examination packages are allowed for tax relief!


Here is the full list of Tax Reliefs for your reference:


Tax Rates for Year of Assessment 2017

The tax rate imposed on a tier basis of your chargeable income. The higher you earn, the more percentage of tax you will need to pay. Tax rates may vary from year to year.



Employees’ benefits which have cash value should be added into your chargeable income. Benefits include company credit cards, staff discount, petrol allowance or any kind of payment sponsored by the company. However, some perquisites are tax exempted as stated below.


Don’t forget to file your taxes before 30th April but for those with business income source, your dateline is 30th June. Good luck with your tax filing and try not to be too last minute!

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