• About Transfer Duty


    Transfer duty is a general tax imposed under the Duties Act 2008 (‘Duties Act’) on dutiable transactions over dutiable property (whether documented or not) including transfers of real estate and certain business assets.

    For a detailed overview on transfer duty, please refer to the Duties Fact Sheet ‘Transfer Duty Overview' or watch the video.

    Please note - A duty liability may exist within the Indian Ocean Territories as if they were Western Australia.
    See details of the arrangement between Western Australia and the Commonwealth.


    Dutiable Property

    Dutiable property is defined as:house

    Dutiable property also includes new dutiable property and special dutiable property.

    New Dutiable Property   Special Dutiable Property
    • land in WA, including an estate or interest in land
    • an option to acquire dutiable property, unless part of a simultaneous put and call option over dutiable property
    • a right to acquire dutiable property
    • certain business assets including
      • intellectual property,
      • a restraint of trade arrangement, and
      • a business identity
    • a life or remainder interest in land
    • a lease, if consideration is paid, or agreed to be paid, for the surrender of the lease
    • an easement or right of way
    • part or all of a mining tenement, if the surrender is made in contemplation of, or as part of an agreement that, it will be granted to or acquired by another person
    • a right under an application under the Mining Act 1978 for a mining tenement if consideration is paid for the transaction

    Dutiable Transactions

    Transfer duty is imposed on dutiable transactions. Transactions that are not dutiable are not subject to transfer duty. Some transactions may be exempt from duty or eligible for nominal duty.

    The following are dutiable transactions:   The following are not dutiable transactions:
    • a transaction the subject of which is a right, unless there is consideration paid for the transaction
    • a transfer, or agreement to transfer, a lease, unless there is a consideration paid for the transaction
    • a transfer, or agreement to transfer, a security interest where the consideration for the transfer is equal to or greater than the market value of the security interest
    • a transaction over a unit in a unit trust

    The Office of State Revenue does not endorse documents executed on or after 1 July 2008 that do not effect a dutiable transaction.

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    Do I have to pay duty?

    The time at which liability for duty arises varies depending on the type of dutiable transaction.  In most cases this is the date the document evidencing the transaction is signed.  For example, liability for duty on an agreement to transfer dutiable property, such as a contract for sale for the purchase of land, will be when the agreement is first made (i.e. when the contract is executed by both parties).

    The person liable to duty is generally the purchaser, transferee or acquirer.

    For more information, see the Assessment of Transfer Duty page.

    Information about lodging a transaction document for assessment and paying transfer duty can be found on the Lodgments and Payments page.


    Substituted transferees and disclosure of agency relationships (no double duty)

    exchangeDetails of the purchaser(s) of the dutiable property must be provided in full and must include whether the property is to be held as joint tenants or tenants in common. Where information is not clearly included about the type of tenancy or the percentage of each party’s ownership, it will be presumed the ownership is tenants in common in equal shares.

    Additional duty may be payable where:

    In limited circumstances, duty is not chargeable on a transfer where the person named as the transferee differs from the person named in the agreement as the purchaser.  Application form FDA14 'Substituted Transferees' must be submitted with the transaction documents (e.g. offer and acceptance, transfer of land form) for the transfer of land to be endorsed ‘No Double Duty’. For further information see Duties Fact Sheets 'Substituted Transferees' and 'No Double Duty'.

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